What Next? Now That Tinubu’s Political Ego Has Been Battered–Amako Nneji

By Ikenga Chronicles November 28, 2016

By now, the embattled National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Bola Tinubu must be nursing his wounds after suffering humiliating defeat at the hands of the President Muhammadu Buhari-led APC cabal in last Saturday’s governorship election in Ondo State.

Top sources say  that the Ondo Poll was the last straw that broke the camel’s back that saw the final humiliation of Tinubu right in his geopolitical zone. His political abracadabra could  not fly, as  he was roundly trounced.

He has been likened to a drowning man clinging to a straw; the foundation of his political career shaking.

”Though, Tinubu has congratulated Akeredolu, an act orchestrated to save his face,his political fortune is dwindling, his political ego has been battered and bruised.” one of the sources said.

There is no doubt that the outcome of the poll was that of mixed bag for the contenders and their respective godfathers.

A former President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) Rotimi Akeredolu of the APC, in cruising to victory humiliated Tinubu who had earlier rejected his candidacy, by polling 244,842 votes to defeat 27 other candidates.

It was a shocker as Buhari, Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Dr. Kayode Fayemi; Ogun State governor, Ibikunle Amosun and APC National Chairman, John Oyegun taught Tinubu some political lessons despite his political standing.

Tinubu and his ally’s deployment of their financial war chest could not make a difference as their candidate Olusola Oke of Alliance For Democracy (AD) trailed by polling 126,889 votes.

Many political analysts have averred that Tinunu is one of the biggest losers in the Ondo governorship poll. The APC national leader had rooted for Segun Abraham to fly the party’s flag but was stopped by some power brokers allegedly backed by the Presidency and national leadership of the party.

Even an outburst against Oyegun could not turn the table. Tinubu had to recoil when all efforts to push his man were rebuffed.

He and his loyalists, not only showed indifference to the Akeredolu governorship project, but shunned the party’s campaign rallies.

He was fingered for being behind the sudden rejuvenation of AD and the good showing the party and its candidate put up during the campaigns.

Though, Tinubu never made any public statement on where he stood, his traducers insisted that he mobilised funds for Oke. With AD’s loss, there is no doubt that the APC national leader’s political rating had further dropped with perhaps,the emergence of new power brokers in the South-West.

The Osun State governor and Tinubu’s political son, Rauf Aregbesola was the arrowhead of aggrieved APC members, who worked for the AD candidate in the election. A core loyalist of Tinubu, Aregbesola mobilised both men and resources for Oke’s project.

This pitted him against some groups in his state, which felt that his involvement in the Ondo election was a misadventure given that his administration owes civil servants in Osun State a backlog of salaries.

Buhari played a crucial role in Akeredolu’s victory. He stood solidly behind the candidate during the campaign period, especially when some party leaders turned against him. The president was in Akure penultimate Saturday to drum up support for Akeredolu and urged the electorate to vote for the APC candidate.

Akeredolu’s victory means expansion of frontiers for Buhari as the race for the 2019 presidency begins.

Swallowing his pride, Tinubu, had congratulated Rotimi Akeredolu on his victory in the just concluded Ondo State governorship election. He also attributed the victory to Buhari’s profile and called on all party members angered by the governorship primaries to bury the hatchet.

The statement, released after the announcement of Akeredolu as winner by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) quoted Tinubu as saying, “With regard to the governorship election in Ondo State, I extend congratulations to Oluwarotimi Akeredolu (SAN) on the outcome of the election and for his perseverance and persistence in seeking that office.”

“Finally, I must express profound congratulations to President Muhammadu Buhari, the national leader of the party, whose stature and dignity helped guide the APC to another victory that should advance the progressive aims of the party and the people.”

Tinubu, whose preferred candidate,  Segun Abrahams, lost to  Akeredolu in the primaries, added that now is the time for the people of the state to work for the “continued development, prosperity and peace of the state and the country at large.”

Many see the statement by Jagaban as a face-saving action .The ultimate question however is; now  that Tinubu’s ego has been bruised what next?

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