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Fayemi Says Running For President Is Not Betrayal Of Tinubu
2023 Election

Fayemi Says Running For President Is Not Betrayal Of Tinubu 

He says that his ambition is not a political one, and that he holds Tinubu in high regard.

By Omotayo Olutekunbi

Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State says his presidential aspiration is not a betrayal of his political ally Bola Tinubu, following his bid for the presidency in 2023.

On Wednesday, May 4, 2022, the presidential candidate of the governing All Progressives Congress (APC) declared this on Channels Television’s ‘Politics Today’ show.

Fayemi, who announced his desire to run for President on Wednesday, is now in a contest with Tinubu, who first expressed interest in January.

The governor said, “Running for office is not an ambition; I’ve always maintained that it is service, it is sacrifice, it is duty.”

Fayemi said he and Tinubu had had a good connection when they met in 1994.

He clarified that his ambition is not a political one, and he expressed his admiration for Tinubu.

He said, “I’ve had a very good relationship with Asiwaju Bola Tinubu whom I met in exile in 1994 when he came out after the annulment of the election and the establishment of NADECO (National Democratic Coalition)…We maintained a very cordial relationship ever since then.

So, when I was asked by Governor Niyi Adebayo, the current Minister of Trade and Investment, to come and run for office in Ekiti, Asiwaju supported me; he was out there for me because of his knowledge of my involvement in the pro-democracy movement and we’ve worked together on a number of issues.

“This is not a personal contest; this is about Nigeria, the future of our children. It is about competing visions of what that future holds for Nigerians.

“I have the greatest respect for Asiwaju and I will continue to do that but I do believe that I have a strong vision on how to reposition Nigeria and build on the legacies of the current President.”

Fayemi was asked if his presidential ambitions betrayed Tinubu,

The Asiwaju that I know is a democrat; he believes that politics is a marketplace of ideas and people should test their own convictions. His (Tinubu’s) courage of conviction is not in doubt and I do not think he will want to stamp on the convictions of others in terms of how Nigerians should go.

“I don’t believe that we should see that as a basis for demonizing anyone and I know that the Asiwaju that I know, that I have interacted with would not subscribe to that. I don’t believe that he will use terminologies like betrayal.

“This is not an inheritance; it is about Nigeria — Nigeria is the commonwealth of all Nigerians. It is not a traditional title that we are seeking, the office we are seeking is to make an improvement for all Nigerians.”

Last month, Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, who is seen to have benefited from Tinubu’s political leadership, announced his candidacy for president.

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