The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, on Monday, received leading presidential aspirants of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to discuss the party’s zoning formula ahead of the 2023 General Elections.
They include the Governors of Sokoto and Bauchi States, Aminu Tambuwal and Bala Mohammed respectively; former Senate President, Bukola Saraki and foremost economist, Alhaji Mohammed Hayatudeen, among others.
Receiving the visitors at the Government House in Benin City, Obaseki said the country was in dire need of a leader with the capacity to unite and rebuild the nation.
According to him, “40 years ago, we had a big cake to share but not today. That cake has disappeared. Whoever aspires to be president of this country must be somebody who Nigerians are ready to give ingredients to start to rebuild a bigger cake for us all.”
Obaseki continued: “For us in Edo, we are ready for building a bigger, stronger and better Nigeria as we can’t continue the way we are today. We are concerned that except the PDP comes out and rallies Nigerians around, it will be difficult to pull Nigeria back from the brinks.
“Things are really bad and difficult for our people. We have never had it this bad. We have never had the level of combination of poverty and inflation as food inflation in Nigeria is pushing millions of people into starvation, coupled with the security challenges.
“Many have been kidnapped in Nigeria as we speak and this is not about individual aspirations but about Nigeria. We need the country to survive to be able to push our individual aspirations. I thank you for providing leadership and trust in God Almighty that has given you the wisdom to make Nigeria the higher goal.”
He further added, “I can’t thank our visitors enough for bringing a new lease of life into our politics. This is a new model in leadership selection where leaders with higher aspirations can come together for the good of the people.
“They are working towards a consensus candidate arrangement knowing the task of becoming Nigeria’s president.”
Earlier, Saraki, who spoke on behalf of others, said the visit was to canvas for the option to adopt a consensus candidate ahead of the 2023 general elections.
He said, “We all know the various situations that exist in our country and the need for the PDP to provide a platform and in doing that, we realize that the interest of the country is more paramount to our own interests.
“As such, we have come together and agreed that we should work out a consensus where we don’t all just go to the field. We don’t want our energy to be focused on just trying to get to power, but on how to help make Nigeria better.”
Saraki added, “A lot of Nigerians out there are really going through a hard time and as a party, we want to show that we are really committed to their interests. Our individual interest is secondary.
“We need your support in this process. What Nigerians need now is a president that has a team to work with. The problems are huge and we all have the qualities to lead this country.