2023 Presidency: Ibrahim Babangida rules out Atiku, Tinubu, others


Ibrahim Babangida

Michael Adeshina

Former Nigerian Military President, General Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida (IBB) has hinted that he will not be supporting Atiku Abubakar, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, or anyone above sixty for the 2023 presidency.

Babangida dropped the hint in an exclusive interview with Arise TV on Friday morning.

Although, Babangida never mentioned the name of Tinubu or Atiku but insisted that the Nigerian leader in 2023 must be in his sixties.

By the next general election in 2023, Atiku, who is 75 this year would be 77, while Tinubu, who marked an official 69th birthday in March, would have turned 70 years.

Meanwhile, IBB as Babangida is fondly called, confirmed that he has been scouting for a new Nigerian leader who will be in his sixties in 2023.

IBB said: “I have started visualising a good Nigerian leader. That is, a person, who travels across the country and has a friend virtually everywhere he travels to and he knows at least one person that he can communicate with.

“That is a person, who is very versed in economics and is also a good politician, who should be able to talk to Nigerians and so on. I have seen one, or two or three of such persons already in his sixties.”

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When asked if the person could emerge victorious in the 2023 presidential election, IBB said, “I believe so if we can get him.”

Babangida also noted that Nigeria needs a leader that will talk to the people and not talk on top of the people.

He said: “If you get a good leadership that links with the people and tries to talk with the people; not talking on top of the people, then we would be okay.”

When asked about his relationship with President Muhammadu Buhari, who he toppled in August 1985, he said: “Our relationship is still very good. The seeming rift between us is caused by you, the media.”

On Fight against Corruption

Babangida, who served as head of state between 1985 and 1993, said his administration was a saint compared to what is happening now.

He said he sacked a governor during his time for corruption involving money less than N300.

According to him, we now have Governors who stole billions of Naira and are walking free.

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