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10 Oct 2018

Buhari vs Atiku: Obasanjo, Afenifere Unveil Their Presidential Preferences Ahead Of 2019

Spokesperson of the Pan Yoruba socio-political group, Afenifere, Yinka Odumakin, yesterday, disclosed that the group’s visit to the former President Olusegun Obasanjo, was simply to reciprocate a similar visit to their chieftain, Chief Ayo Adebanjo.

Afenifere also disclosed that it would support any candidate in the 2019 presidential election who supports restructuring.

Some chieftains of Afenifere, including Adebanjo, Senator Femi Okurounmu, Professor Banji Akintoye, Supo Sonibare, Dr. Tokunbo Awolowo-Dosunmu, Olagunsoye Oyinlola, Oladipupo Olaitan, among others, visited the former president at his Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library (OOPL), Abeokuta residence.

The entourage, which arrived OOPL around 2.50 p.m., headed straight into a meeting with Obasanjo and did not emerge until 5.45 p.m.

Thereafter, Odumakin, refused to divulge details of what transpired behind closed doors. He only reiterated that the meeting was to reciprocate Obasanjo’s good gesture when he personally visited Adebanjo in Lagos; few months ago.

He said the group also took opportunity of the visit to refresh and discuss the current situation in the country with the former president.

“We are trying to further the friendship so that there can be harmony in Yorubaland, so that our people can know that leaders across the divides are coming together to discuss way forward,” Odumakin stated.

Asked whether Afenifere has pitched its tent with any particular presidential candidate, Odumakin, declared the group would soon make its position known but hinted that they would support any candidate who shows commitment to restructure the country.

“The 2019 elections are going to be interesting. The most important thing for us is restructuring and clearly you should know that Afenifere will always support a candidate that is ready to restructure the country. This is because, without restructuring, we are going nowhere.

"We have heard someone saying that Nigeria can be restructured and we have heard of another allowing the reports of the Confab gathering dust. Clearly, the choice to tilt towards is obvious. But, soon, our position on this will be formally known to Nigerians,” he said.

Meanwhile, ahead of 2019, Obasanjo has said Nigeria needs a leader with sound knowledge of the economy.

Obasanjo said this at at the Foursquare Gospel Church annual public lecture, with the theme: “The trying triangle of economy, faith and politics–Looking through the eye of the needle,” at the church’s national headquarters in Yaba, Lagos.

“There is no doubt at all that, if we have to get it right the three (economy, faith and politics) must go together.

“One of my international friends, the late Helmut Schmidt, who was a former Chancellor of Germany said if we, in Africa, have to make it, all our political leaders must have good grounding in economy.

“As a fact, from Bishop Kukah, even Jesus Christ understood the economy and if you have a leader who does not understand economics, then you cannot have a leader that will satisfy the need of the people, the physical and the material needs of the people,” Obasanjo said.

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