ABEOKUTA – A chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ogun State, Ladi Adebutu, has advised the Yoruba people of South-West Nigeria not to be selfish but to support the party’s presidential candidate Atiku Abubakar in the 2023 general elections.
Adebutu spoke on Monday in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital, during a campaign to garner support ahead of the 2023 polls.
According to him, former President Olusegun Obasanjo and interim Head of State Ernest Shonekan from the South-West geopolitical zone have been Nigerian leaders at separate times whilst nobody from the North-East has been the first citizen.
Adebutu, who code-mixed the Yoruba with the English language, said, “What I want to talk about today is the coexistence of the Yoruba people with others in Nigeria.
“Earlier, I told some people to support Alhaji Atiku Abubakar as the next president for the peace of Nigeria but some people turned deaf ears; they insisted that it is the turn of the Yoruba people but the Yoruba people have been in power for a number of times.
“Our father Olusegun Obasanjo was in power. Our father (Ernest) Shonekan was also there. Let’s not be selfish. Is it only Yoruba that exists? The truth must be said.”
Adebutu also claimed some people have lost their integrity because of a pot of porridge.
“We cannot take Yorubaland out of the mainstream of Nigeria. Yorubaland must remain in the mainstream of Nigeria,” he noted whilst reacting to secession calls by some groups.
Atiku from Adamawa State in the Northeast, was Nigeria’s vice-president between 1999 and 2007 when Obasanjo was President.
The 75-year-old is jostling for Aso Rock’s top job in 2023 alongside Bola Tinubu of the APC (from Lagos State in the South-West) as well as Peter Obi of the Labour Party (from Anambra State in the South-East), amongst other contenders.
Also in attendance at the rally on Monday include Adebutu’s running mate, Adekunle Akinlade; former Kano State Governor, Ibrahim Shekarau; and his Niger State counterpart, Babangida Aliyu; amongst others.