Tinubu’s candidates, opposition in battle of intrigues as 10th N’Assembly elects leaders

Tinubu’s candidates, opposition in battle of intrigues as 10th N’Assembly elects leaders
By Business
Jun 14

Tinubu’s candidates, opposition in battle of intrigues as 10th N’Assembly elects leaders

On Tuesday June 11, the 10th National Assembly will hold an election to choose its leaders. For weeks, there has been intense lobbying and political maneuvering by the various aspirants and interest groups, all hoping to emerge victorious. At the center of this political drama is Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the national leader of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), and his quest to retain his hold on power in Lagos State, where he is regarded as the godfather.

Tinubu’s influence

Tinubu, a former governor of Lagos State, is known for his political astuteness and ability to control the political machinery of the state. Despite not holding any official position in the government, he is widely considered to be the de facto governor of Lagos State. His influence extends beyond Lagos to the national level, where he is one of the most powerful politicians in the country.

Tinubu’s influence in the National Assembly is also significant, as many lawmakers owe their election to him. These lawmakers are known as “Tinubu’s candidates” and they are expected to vote for his preferred candidates in the upcoming election.

However, Tinubu’s grip on the National Assembly may be slipping, as some lawmakers have grown disillusioned with his leadership style and are seeking to assert their independence.

The battle for the Senate Presidency

The most high-profile contest in the upcoming election is the battle for the Senate Presidency. The incumbent, Bukola Saraki, has been at loggerheads with the APC leadership, including Tinubu, and is not expected to retain his position.

Tinubu has thrown his weight behind Senator Ahmed Lawan, who is widely seen as the frontrunner. However, other aspirants, such as Senators Ali Ndume and Danjuma Goje, are also in the race.

The opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has also fielded a candidate, Senator Eyinnaya Abaribe, although his chances of winning are slim.

The battle for the House Speakership

Another high-profile contest is the battle for the House Speakership. The incumbent, Yakubu Dogara, has also fallen out with the APC leadership and is not expected to retain his position.

The front-runners for the Speakership are Femi Gbajabiamila, who is Tinubu’s preferred candidate, and Mohammed Bago, who has the backing of some northern lawmakers. Other aspirants include Nkeiruka Onyejeocha and Umar Bago.

Opposition to Tinubu’s influence

While Tinubu remains a powerful force within the APC, there is growing opposition to his influence. Many lawmakers are frustrated with what they see as his overbearing leadership style and are seeking to assert their independence.

For example, a group of lawmakers, known as the Reformed APC (R-APC), split from the party last year and have been critical of Tinubu’s leadership. The R-APC is expected to play a key role in the upcoming election, as its members could align with the opposition to tip the balance of power in their favor.

The role of money and patronage

Nigeria’s political system is known for its reliance on money and patronage, and the upcoming election is no different. Aspirants have been lavishing money on lawmakers in an attempt to win their support.

There are also reports of threats and intimidation being used to coerce lawmakers into voting for particular candidates. President Muhammadu Buhari has warned against such tactics and called for a free and fair election.

The impact on governance

The outcome of the election will have significant implications for governance in Nigeria. The National Assembly plays a crucial role in shaping policy and holding the executive branch accountable.

If Tinubu’s preferred candidates win, he will be in a stronger position to control the political machinery of the country. However, if opposition candidates prevail, it could lead to a power shift and a more assertive legislature.

The battle for the leadership of the 10th National Assembly is a high-stakes game of political intrigue and maneuvering. Tinubu’s candidates are pitted against opposition lawmakers, with the outcome likely to determine the balance of power in Nigeria for years to come.

As the election draws near, the tension is palpable, and the stakes are higher than ever. Whatever the outcome, one thing is clear: Nigeria’s political landscape is in for a major shake-up.

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