Opinion: Why The Next President Of Nigeria Should Be A Unifier

Opinion: Why The Next President Of Nigeria Should Be A Unifier

By Jewel Idris

In a few days, Nigerians will be at their respective polling units, voting for who they believe is the most qualified candidate to take over the seat of presidency. The presidential election will take place on the 25th of February, and its all everyone seems to be talking about, as well as their preferred candidates.

As much as we know, there are 3 major contenders from a total of 18 contenders in the upcoming presidential elections. Bola Ahmed Tinubu from the ruling party, All Progressives Congress (APC), Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), and Peter Obi of the Labour Party (LP).

At this point, everyone thinks they know who they will be voting for, but at a closer look, one would find that these choices were made based on biases such as tribe, religion, and others.

Different candidates are being touted as messiahs that can transform Nigeria and restore her lost glory. However, theres one key trait people are failing to consider in these candidates, and that is the unifier trait.

Nigeria is a country with over 250 ethnic groups with three ethnicities at the forefront. For years, this has been one of the major determinants of who gets elected. This is done on the assumption that whoever gets elected favours his ethnic group above others, and that might not be far from the truth.

So, why is the same thing being repeated?
While some are arguing that there has never been a president from the South East, others are arguing that we need someone with an entrepreneurial and innovative mindset to liberate Nigeria from its economic woes.

What we dont understand is that Nigerias major challenge isnt the economy but the lack of a leader that enables the prosperity of everyone regardless of their tribes or religious inclination. Until we have such a leader, we can hardly make headway in transforming the economic situation of the country for good.

However, only one of the candidates in the coming election seems to have what it truly takes to be the president regardless of the tribal and religious bias.

That candidate is Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
Hate him or love him, it is without a doubt that Tinubu is a unifier. From his days as the governor of Lagos State, he has been a true patriot of the country, creating opportunities for businesses to thrive and promoting unity.

Lagos State is arguably the most populous state in the country; home to millions of people from different tribes and of different backgrounds. Whilst it is a South-Western state and the Yorubas make up the largest percentage of the people that live in Lagos, you will also find large populations of other ethnic groups, particularly the Igbos and Hausas.

Typical of the Igbos, they have thousands of businesses across various sectors in Lagos, many of which are successful today and deriving socio-economic benefits from the system. The ease of doing business in Lagos is relatively easier, not only because there is a large market for almost anything, but because the Government policies facilitate the ease.

Yes, its been 16 years since Tinubu’s tenure as the Governor of Lagos State ended, yet he set the precedence by creating an environment where local businesses can thrive. Beyond that, Tinubu isn’t a religious bigot or fanatic and it is evident from his tenure.

Even in his campaigns, he has made clear statements on his plans for local businesses not only in Lagos but in other states, even in the South-East.

At a town hall meeting in Imo State sometime in November 2022, he said and; “We will build an ecosystem where traders will have access to credit facilities and create more and better jobs for our youths, as well as support more high-quality home-grown goods. My government will build new industrial hubs in Aba and Owerri. We will establish policies that would widen horizons and expand business reach while ensuring Owerri-Port Harcourt and Aba-Port Harcourt corridors become more active and lucrative trade and manufacturing corridors.

This is exactly the kind of leader we need in Nigeria. Someone who will spearhead the convergence of our differences and transform them into a bond that not only unites us all but aids the progress of every Nigerian regardless of where they come from.

Some candidates are riding on ethnic goading to sway public opinion while some are harnessing the power of sweet-talking. Tinubu is the only one with the best campaign strategy the unifier approach and even though detractors will continue the smear campaign against him, all evidence point to the fact that he is the right man for the job.

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