The Director, Media and Publicity, Tinubu-Shettima Presidential Campaign Council, Bayo Onanuga, has said the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, is ready to serve Nigeria and not after personal interest.
Onanuga said this while faulting the Leader of the Yoruba Nation Self-Determination Struggle, Prof Banji Akintoye, who issued a statement on Thursday saying Tinubu’s presidential ambition was personal and not for the welfare of the Yoruba people.
Akintoye had said, “Our history will judge that at a time when our nation needs to stand up and defend itself, you started to bring up an agenda; a personal agenda of your own before them. You are asking us to vote for you.
“We will not vote for you. Whether it is for the Presidency or the Senate or House of Rep or whatever, we will not vote for you. We would have taken our country out of Nigeria by then. So, we advise you now to return to your people. I am advising you now, to return to your people and wash your soul clean. You are doing an unpardonable thing.”
Reacting, Onanuga described Akintoye’s statement as malicious and unwarranted, in a statement issued on Thursday, titled, ‘Professor Banji Akintoye’s Misdirected Aggression.’
The statement read, “Our attention has been drawn to an unfortunate, misdirected, misplaced and divisive statement credited to Prof Banji Akintoye, in which his group threatened to pull the South West out of Nigeria.
“To be candid, there are several agitation groups in the South West and in other parts of Nigeria who wrongly think the best way to demand justice and fairness is through the break-up of our country.
“And since there has been no referendum held in Yorubaland about whether to stay in Nigeria or not and no such referendum has been held in any part of Nigeria, it is then appropriate to assume that this separatist idea is Akintoye and his group’s sole idea.
“We join other bonafide and critical stakeholders in Yorubaland to advise Prof Akintoye not to plunge our people into a needless and precipitate crisis or create another Rwanda.”
Onanuga also faulted Akintoye’s argument that Tinubu is pursuing personal interest.
He continued, “We find it quite preposterous the Professor’s sweeping outlandish accusation that Asíwájú Bola Ahmed Tinubu is only pursuing his PERSONA interest in running for the presidency of Nigeria. Such a statement is malicious and unwarranted. It is pertinent to state that Asiwaju Tinubu is contesting for Nigeria’s presidency because of his readiness to render unflinching service to Nigerians and because of his abiding faith in a strong, united and prosperous Nigeria where every man and woman, regardless of their ethnicity and religious beliefs, can be proud and prosperous.
“Most of the issues around the structure of our federalism raised in Prof Akintoye’s poorly thought-out statement have been sufficiently addressed in Asiwaju’s Action Plan with his promise to address some of the problems plaguing our federalism and the will to make the states more viable as federating units by devolving more powers to them.”