Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo has denied insinuations and media reports/engagements that portend to pitch him against his former boss and chieftain of the All Peoples Congress (APC) ahead of the 2023 presidential election.
Osinbajo was Commissioner of Justice in the cabinet of Tinutbu when the latter was Governor of Lagos State.
The Vice-President, through his political adviser, Babafemi Ojudu, on Monday washed his hands off a face-off between his supporter and Tinubu’s on a television programme and the attendant news story in a national newspaper.
According to Ojudu in a statement: “My attention has been drawn to a media engagement on Channels TV this morning and a front page story of Daily Independent today.
“On the Channels TV Sunrise programme two persons supposedly representing Asiwaju Support Group and Osinbajo Support Group were pitched against each other.
“On the other hand, Daily Independent ran an headline thus:
2023 Presidency: Osinbajo On A Collision Course With Tinubu, Pushes To Succeed Buhari
“It is incumbent on me to state emphatically that neither the Vice President nor his office is aware of this or endorse this kind of a divisive engagement and news reports.
“Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo are members of same party. Osinbajo regards Tinubu as a respected leader of a political family to which he belongs and will therefore not for any reason endorse an endeavor that seeks to pitch them against each other.
“We are not unaware of some people who may want to foist a crack among our leaders. Such an attempt is abortive. Osinbajo and Tinubu’s relationship dates way back and it shall continue to wax strong.
“Let me therefore call on individuals and media houses engaged in this act to desist from doing so. The APC remains one single, indivisible party and Osinbajo remains a loyal member of the party who respects both the party structure as well as its leadership.
“Moreover, the INEC has not given a go ahead yet for politicking towards 2023. As a law abiding citizen, Osinbajo will not commence any act in this regard until INEC blows the whistle, and in any case the VP has not indicated interest in the 2023 elections
“While appreciating individuals who are clamoring for him to contest, we however want to plead that they should not draw him or allow themselves into an unnecessary and precipitous controversy.
“We welcome our great leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu back into the country. As a great democrat himself, he will certainly welcome politics without bitterness and divisiveness. We wish him good health, long life and prosperity.”