Gov. Yahaya Bello of Kogi on Wednesday in Abuja, picked the All Progressives Congress (APC) Expression of Interest and Nomination forms for its ticket to vie for the 2023 presidential election.
Bello who was the first aspirant to pay the N100 million fees for the forms, told newsmen shortly after picking up the forms at the APC national secretariat, that if elected as the country’s next president in 2023, he would restore the hope of Nigerians.
He, however, re-emphasised that he was not intimidated by the big names in the 2023 presidential race.
On the recent calls by some groups and even governors on former President Goodluck Jonathan to be adopted as APC consensus candidate, Bello said that was the beauty of democracy.
The Kogi governor while saying he was not threatened by the calls, said in democracy, people were allowed to support their preferred aspirants.
“That is the beauty of democracy, in democracy, anybody can support anyone, but I am assuring you that our great party, the APC is a party that has its own ethics, rules and regulations.
“I know surely that all of these are in my favour and I am not in any way scared of the pedigree of anyone whatsoever.
“I am confident that I am in the majority, I have the women, I have the youths, I have the people living with disabilities and they are all behind me. I have leaders, I have followers and above all, I have God almighty,” he said.
Bello said if elected as the country’s next president in 2023, he would restore hope in Nigerians.
He said he was coming to restore hope to the entire Nigeria, the entire black race across the world, and Africa as a continent.
“That is the hope we are bringing on board to unite, to secure, and to put our country and her people on the path of progress and prosperity.
“We give glory to God almighty the creator of the universe who has created today and made today a reality.
“Today I have with me my expression of interest and nomination forms to contest as the presidential flag bearer of this great party, the APC.
“Right now, what we have ahead of us is the task of canvassing and consulting all party faithful, leaders, stalwarts, members and all Nigerians at home and in the Diaspora.
“Give us your support to emerge as the flag-bearer of this great party come May 30 and 31, and by the grace of God, I shall become victorious and the party shall become victorious,” he said.
Hafsat Abiola-Costello, Director-General, `Hope ‘23 Yahaya Bello Campaign Organisation’’ said Bello demonstrated sincerity of purpose by being the first aspirant to pay for the forms.
She said Bello’s action was a demonstration that the young people were ready to take over the country’s leadership.
“This is a historic moment, a great milestone in the history of our country.
“Finally, the young people of Nigeria are taking responsibility, demonstrating that we can lead this country to a brighter future.
“Because we want to demonstrate our sincerity of purpose, our belief is that this is the destiny that God wants for Nigeria and we will do everything in our power to bring it to pass.
“So we are looking forward for the support of delegates of the APC; we are also looking forward to the support of Nigerians when we get to the presidential campaign.
“God willing, 2023, we will be welcoming President Yahaya Bello to Aso Rock. Congratulations to all Nigerians,” Abiola-Costello said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), reports that some of those in the 2023 presidential race in the APC include; Sen. Bola Tinubu, a former governor of Lagos, Mr Rotimi Amaechi, Minister of Transportation, and Mr Rochas Okorocha, the immediate past governor of Imo.
Also in the race are; Dr Chris Ngige, Minister of Labour and Productivity, Mr Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, Minister of State for Education and Gov. David Umahi of Ebonyi among others.
Source: News Agency Of Nigeria