As Nigeria prepares for its 2023 elections and most likely its 5th President since the return of democracy in 1999, which is expected to be a major milestone for Nigeria, a number of candidates have emerged in 3 months promising to restructure Nigeria and deliver it from its economic woes.
The aspirants under the two main political parties so far are former Lagos State Governor and founder of the APC, Bola Ahmed Tinubu; current Governor of Ebonyi State, David Umahi, former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar; former Governor of Anambra State, Peter Obi, and current Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike, Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, Yemi Osinbajo.
19. Kingsley Moghalu
The former deputy Central Bank Governor and Presidential aspirant picked his Expression of Interest/Nomination form for the African Democratic Congress.
He said, “I purchased the form myself, opting against the usual fake purchases on behalf of aspirants by shadowy groups. I did so because Nigerians are worthy of this sacrifice”
18. Adams Oshiomhole
The former Edo State Governor dumped his earlier intention to contest for the senate and declared his intention to run for the seat of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
He said, “It is in the interest of the rich to pay that tax so they can enjoy their wealth,” he said saying that he will purchase the All Progressives Congress (APC) nomination and expression of interest forms in the next few hours.
“If we can subsidise petroleum products to the tune of trillions then we can subsidise education, agriculture etc.”
17. Godswill Akpabio
The former Akwa Ibom State Governor made the formal declaration in front of a massive turnout of supporters of the All Progressives Congress at the Ikot Ekpene township stadium.
16. Kayode Fayemi
The Governor of Ekiti State and Chairman of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum, declared his intention to run for the 2023 Presidential election under the umbrella of the All Progressive Congress, APC.
He stated that he had travelled the length and breadth of Nigeria to consult with esteemed elder statesmen and women, and a cross-section of party members, before arriving at his decision.
15. Senator Ibikunle Amosun
The immediate past Governor of Ogun State, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, has formally declared his intention to contest for the office of president in the 2023 general election with a promise to provide a leadership that will galvanize Nigeria to achieve its manifest destiny as a leader in Africa.
Amosun who is the current senator representing Ogun Central Senatorial District in the National Assembly made this known in a letter to the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, and read during Wednesday’s plenary.
The letter is titled “Notification and invitation to the formal declaration of contest for the Office of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria under the All Progressives Congress APC.”
The letter from Amosun reads, “It is with greatest respect I write to notify you and my distinguished colleagues of my intention to contest for the office of the President of our dear country, the Federal Republic of Nigeria, and to respectfully invite you and my distinguished colleagues to the formal declaration ceremony.
14. Ben Ayade
The former Governor of Cross River state said that he has secured the approval of President Muhammadu Buhari to hold consultations leading up to unveiling his plans to contest for the presidential ticket of the All Progressives Congress.
Ayade who met with President Buhari behind closed doors said he got a commitment from the president to go ahead and run if he has the qualities, but he must consult widely with leaders of the party from the south-south region.
The Cross River Governor who recently defected from the opposition Peoples Democratic Party to the All Progressive Congress said he would concentrate on power, security and economic challenges if he becomes the President.
He said: “I believe that the party leadership will decide the appropriate candidate that will take our party to victory and so if you heard me well, I am just part of the family, absolutely loyal to the President, seeking to run for president and I’m running.”
13. Yahaya Bello
On the 26th of April, 2020, the Governor of Kogi State, Yahaya Bello became the first APC presidential aspirant to pay N100 million for nomination fees.
His campaign office stated “We are highly encouraged by the number of APC governors, leaders and stakeholders who have demonstrated their strong support for the candidacy of our principal.
“We reiterate that he is not known for betrayal. He is always very loyal to his own, and his priorities had always been Nigeria, Nigeria and Nigeria.”
12. Bukola Saraki
The former Governor of Kwara State and former Senate President, Bukola Saraki, has described himself as a man with the intellectual capacity and boldness to rescue Nigeria from its current challenges if voted into power.
During his visit to Akure, Ondo State to canvass support from the delegates of the party in the state, he said the 2023 elections would be a turning point for the country. He said Nigeria needed a president with an understanding of the economy and that could sacrifice in rescuing Nigeria from its current challenges.
Mr Saraki said Nigeria needed a president with energy that could administer the country for 24-hours or more if the situation n necessitated it.
He said, “If I am the President, I will hold people accountable and they will do what is right to end insecurity and there will be no injustice.”
11. Aminu Tambuwal
The Governor of Sokoto State and former speaker of the House of Reps, also formally submitted a nomination form, expressing his interest to contest for the 2023 Presidency in Nigeria.
Tambuwal who favours a consensus candidacy said, “Consensus is a good thing. Is healthy for the party. Our prayer, I’m thinking is that the consensus will favour me.
“So far, I am the frontline aspirant, our thinking, our prayer and hope is that the consensus will go my way.”
10. Rabiu Kwankwaso
The Former Governor of Kano State, also formally joined the New Nigerian Peoples Party to contest the 2023 Presidential elections.
In an interview earlier he stated that security is one of the main areas he will focus on, saying “I believe security is one of the areas we will handle with utmost competence so that Nigerians can be free again to pursue their daily businesses.’’
9. Chris Ngige
The Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige on Tuesday announced his decision to contest the 2023 presidential election under the All Progressives Congress (APC).
He stated that he is contesting because he has “all it takes to steer the ship of Nigeria to safe harbour”, citing that during his time as Labour Minister, he handled 1, 383 labour-related disputes.
“I can give a high mark to this government in some areas, and score the government low in some aspects due to some prevailing factors,” he said, stating that due to years of experience in Governance, he has the necessary skillsets to challenge Nigeria’s present issues.
8. Yemi Osinbajo
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo officially declared his intention to join the race for the seat of the President ahead of 2023.
He stated that he has been in homes all-round the country, and also with tech founders and people in the entertainment industry, and also with small businesses. He added that he knows the hopes and aspirations of business owners and their fears and believes in those hopes are the seeds of greater Nigeria that we all desire
On his plans, if elected, he said, “I believe we must all complete what we have started, radically transforming security and intelligence infrastructure, completing reform of justice system and focusing on adequate welfare of judicial personnel and observance of rule of law, rapidly advance infrastructure development, especially power, road, railways and broadband connectivity, providing an environment for business to thrive, taking the agriculture to next level, especially mechanization, making sure Government agencies serve the business community, creating a tech economy that will provide jobs for millions of young Nigerians, and enhance social investment to a fullscale social welfare programme, and completing the promise of lifting 100 million Nigerians out of poverty within this decade, and the education reform for relevance to the challenges of the century.”
7. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi
Nigeria’s Minister of Transportation and former Governor of Rivers State, Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi formally declared his intention to run for the 2023 Presidential elections.
He stated that he is compelled by the urgency of Nigeria’s present challenges to place his experience and proven capacity at the service of the nation at the highest level.
He revealed that his campaign will have only one message, “Hope is around the corner”.
“If you elect me as your President, I promise to play my part to the best of my ability. Every day I will rise and go to work for you. I will never forget the fact that I am there to serve you,” he started
6. Nyesom Wike
The Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, officially declared his interest to contest the 2023 presidential elections in Nigeria this week, stating that he is ready to take power from the APC because he has the capacity to fight the ruling party.
“This APC requires people who will tell them enough is enough. I am that person that can tell them enough is enough. We must take this power, ‘them no dey dash am’, power is taken. I am ready to take it for PDP. I have come out and I am going to take this power from APC back to PDP by the grace of God,” he added.
5. Rochas Okorocha
Former governor of Imo State, Senator Rochas Okorocha, has declared his intention to contest in the 2023 presidential election.
Okorocha made this known in a letter read at plenary by the President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, on Wednesday.
In the letter, Okorocha said, “With elections drawing nearer as the days go by, our citizens are concerned about the quality of persons to run the affairs of our nation, one who can address some of their major concern which includes;
“A detribalised Nigerian who can unite our country. A leader with a compassionate heart, who will care for the poor and downtrodden and the masses of our country. I, therefore, wish to solicit for your prayers as I make known my intention.”
4. Peter Obi
A day after Atiku declared his interest, the former Vice Presidential aspirant and Governor of Anambra State, also formally declared he is running for President of Nigeria.
He said, “Dear Nigerians. I am here to inform you all that I will be aspiring for the post of President of Nigeria in 2023. -PO”.
Mr. Obi is yet to drop more information on his vision if elected president.
3. Atiku Abubakar
In February, an Abuja division of the Federal High Court dismissed a suit seeking to challenge the eligibility of former Vice President Atiku Abubakar to contest for the office of the president.
The former Vice President, in March officially declared his intention to run for president in 2023. He stated that if elected, his administration will focus on 5 key areas, including unity, security, economy, education and devolving more resources to federating units.
“Nigeria is in a sinking ship and must be rescued. And that is why I am announcing my candidacy for 2023, under the platform of the People’s Democratic Party,” he declared.
2. David Umahi
The Governor of Ebonyi State also formally declared his intention to run for the Office of the President in January.
When asked what his chances would be against the background of other big political figures expected to indicate their intentions to run for the same office, Governor Umahi said God would be the decider of the outcome of the race, pointing out that he stands a chance if the ruling party, APC, throws the ticket open.
1. Bola Ahmed Tinubu
In January, he became the first major candidate to announce his intention to run for president under the (APC) while briefing State House correspondents after a meeting with President Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Aso Rock, Abuja.
He maintained that he has the confidence, vision, and capacity to build on the foundation laid by President Buhari to turn around the fortunes of the country.
“President Buhari’s administration has been correcting the failures of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) through the provision of infrastructures such as rail lines and good roads which have impacted the frequency of fatal crashes and deaths and so on,” he said.