2023: Tony Blair hints of Osinbajo, El-Rufai joint ticket
Former British Prime Minister, Tony Blair may have further advanced his support for the Muhammadu Buhari’s administration by hinting of a joint presidential ticket between Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and Kadina state governor, Nasir El-Rufai.
Reports indicated that the former British leader recently told his team at his leadership institute that both Osinbajo and El-Rufai represent a new generation of Nigerian leadership to take the nation to new height.
Blair is from the beginning a close supporter of the Buhari government, handling diplomatic firefights among others for the administration. The controversial British leader has never hidden his involvement especially from the era of his refusal to support the re-election of former President Goodluck Jonathan to his backing for the emergence of President Buhati as the president in 2015.
Findings showed that as part of plan to set agenda for the succession race within the ruling party in Nigeria, Blair is pushing an Osinbajo/El-Rufai ticket which is already gaining traction within the establishment.
Blair is reported to have commenced internal lobbying within western diplomatic circle to support Osinbajo Presidency.
Those privy to the plan confided in SAHEL STANDARD that the Kaduna state governor also has a long-term working relationship with the former British leader, leading to direct support for the Kaduna state government from the Blair institute.
They noted that A similar working relationship is now officially sealed with the Presidency with the Blair institute offering technical assistance to the Presidency in service delivery across critical sectors of the economy.
This new arrangement is reported to have cemented the involvement of Blair in the Nigerian succession war that is already rumbling within the power structure.
Blair is reported to have relayed clear messages to President Buhari’s inner circle supporting a successor to emerge from South Western Nigeria and particularly Yemi Osinbajo, the incumbent Vice President.
The recommendation of El-Rufai for the Vice Presidency reportedly flows from his reputation in Western world as a competent administrator who will make a great match with the Buhari’s Vice President.
Reports of political undertones in Blair’s visit to Nigeria was, however, not confirmed by Presidency officials.