MEMBERS of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) with eyes on the 2023 presidential ticket are expected to step up their attacks on vice president Professor Yemi Osinbajo after a recent poll revealed 80% of respondents considered him presidential material.
Over the last month, Professor Osinbajo has come under a ferocious attack from political opponents trying to discredit him. Timi Frank, a former APC deputy publicity secretary even claimed that the Federal Inland Revenue Service (Firs) made available a sum of N90bn ($247.62m) to the party to fund its February presidential campaign, which was handed to Professor Osinbajo.
Mr Frank further alleged that the money was mismanaged by the vice president who was tasked with using the funds to bolster APC fortunes in the southwest geo-political zone. It is thought that Mr Frank is the public face of President Muhammadu Buhari’s kitchen cabinet, who have declared all out war on Professor Osinbajo over the last month because they see him as a threat to their plans to take over total control of the apparatus of government.
Members of President Buhari’s kitchen cabinet thought to be behind the attack on the vice president include Abba Kyari, Mamman Daura, Isa Funtua, Boss Mustapha, Lawal Daura and Baba Gana Kingibe. APC national leader Asiwaju Bola Tinubu is now expected to enter the fray after he conducted an opinion poll and the finding revealed that the public saw Professor Osinbajo as a far better president than him.
Asiwaju Tinubu commissioned an opinion poll seeking to test his popularity against that of the vice president but the findings revealed that 80% of respondents rated Professor Osinbajo as presidential material compared with just 20% who said likewise of Asiwaju Tinubu. Apparently, the public pointed to Asiwaju Tinubu’s long track record of deal making and corruption.
It is believed that the popularity of the vice president pushed Asiwaju Tinubu to ask President Muhammadu Buhari and his kitchen cabinet to intervene, resulting in the social investment programme being stripped from the vice president’s office and President Osinbajo’s role in economic management being reduced. It is believed that several members of the kitchen cabinet including Babagana Kingibe and Abba Kyari are nursing ambitions to run with Asiwaju Tinubu or be presidential candidates come 2023.
Things may heat up in coming weeks as security sources confirmed that Asiwaju Tinubu recently hired Israeli investigators to unmask the vice president, while running major online insurgency operations against Professor Osinbajo’s reputation. This was after members of the kitchen cabinet were recently checkmated by President Buhari upon his return from New York, when he said he would hand his deputy more responsibility for economic matters.