An aide to Vice-president Yemi Osinbajo has said his boss would not abandon his interest to contest the 2023 presidential election because of the declaration by Bola Tinubu, ex-governor of Lagos State.
Tinubu had on Monday announced that he had informed President Muhammadu Buhari of his interest to vie for the country’s presidency.
The development had elicited several reactions, with many claiming such move would mark the end of Osinbajo’s interest in the same office.
But speaking with Daily Independent on Tuesday, the vice-president’s aide, who preferred anonymity, said his principal is “very much interested in vying for the number one office in the country.”
He, however, said unlike Tinubu, the APC national leader who went to Buhari to inform him of his intention to contest for the presidency in 2023, Osinbajo was waiting for directives from President Buhari, who is the leader of the APC, on the way forward for the 2023 presidential election.
The aide said the vice president enjoys a lot of goodwill from Nigerians who believe that he is the best candidate who can sustain the legacies of the present administration and even do things better.
He said those claiming that Tinubu beat Osinbajo by declaring for the presidency were wrong because “the vice president has no declaration to make unless authorised by the president.”
He said, “The vice president is very much interested in contesting. From what we have seen, many Nigerians, including key figures in the political and corporate world, believe that he is the best to succeed President Buhari.
“I know the impression many people have is that because his benefactor, Tinubu has declared interest to run, the vice president will perish his ambition. But that is not true. The vice president will contest but he will not jump the gun.
“Right now, he is waiting for directives from President Muhammadu Buhari. If indeed the president wants him as his successor and gives him his blessings to contest so as to continue with the programmes of the administration, he will not turn down the request.”