All Progressives Congress National Leader, Bola Tinubu, has returned to Nigeria about 10 days after he travelled to the United Kingdom, The PUNCH reports.
Our correspondent gathered that the former Lagos State governor and presidential hopeful landed at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport around 8pm on Sunday where he was received by some leaders of his 2023 campaign train.
Tinubu’s spokesman, Tunde Rahman, confirmed the development to our correspondent in a telephone chat. “He (Tinubu) arrived at the Lagos airport just now,” he said.
The PUNCH had reported that the 69-year-old politician travelled overseas last week to hold some meetings and further consultations in line with his 2023 presidential ambition.
There were speculations that he had travelled again to London on health grounds but his spokesman debunked it, saying his principal was “vibrant”.
On January 10, 2022, Tinubu had visited the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), and announced to State House correspondents that he had informed the President of his intention to contest the presidential election in 2023.
Before his most recent UK trip, Tinubu had travelled to some parts of the country including Oyo, Niger, and Zamfara states to widen consultations for his political ambition.
With his return on Sunday, the APC leader is expected to continue consultations for his presidential bid which he described as a “lifelong dream”.
Tinubu had stayed in the United Kingdom for over three months in 2021 when he underwent surgery and therapy for knee injury.
He, however, returned to the country in October of the same year and travelled to some parts of the country to meet political juggernauts and stakeholders ahead of next election.
The health condition of the APC leader has constantly become a subject of controversy but many of his staunch supporters have argued that Tinubu is fit to become Nigeria’s President, adding that he is not older than the current President of the United States, Joe Biden, 79; and his predecessor, Donald Trump, 75.
Former member of the House of Representatives, and Director-General of the Bola Tinubu Support Group, Abdulmumin Jibrin, recently said 14 governors and 26 APC state chairmen are in support of Tinubu’s presidential ambition.
Other presidential hopefuls so far in the APC include Governor of Ebonyi State, Dave Umahi; ex-Governor of Imo State, Rochas Okorocha; former Governor of Abia State and Majority Whip of the Senate, Senator Orji Kalu; among others.
Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, who served as Attorney General in Lagos from 1999 to 2007 while Tinubu was governor, has also been rumoured to nurse an ambition to succeed his boss through the 2023 election but the professor of law has not officially made his intention known.
Aside from the APC, chieftains of the Peoples Democratic Party who have shown interest in getting the party’s 2023 presidential ticket include former Vice President Atiku Abubakar; former Senate President, Bukola Saraki; Sokoto State Governor, Aminu Tambuwal; Bauchi State Governor, Bala Mohammed; and ex-governor of Kano State, Rabiu Kwankwaso. While some of them had yet to officially declare their presidential bid, there are strong indications they are eyeing the exalted seat in Aso Villa.
Other PDP stalwarts including former Senate President and Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Pius Anyim; former Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose; ex-governor of Anambra State, Peter Obi; media personality, Dele Momodu, amongst others have also expressed interest in running for president ahead of party primaries which are expected to hold later this year.