Femi Adesina, the President’s Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, has stated that the President’s visit to the National Leader of the All-Progressives Congress, Bola Tinubu, was not intended to express support for the former Lagos State Governor ahead of the 2023 presidential election.
Adesina revealed on Channels Television’s Politics Today that Buhari paid a visit to Tinubu to express his goodwill following reports about the APC chieftain’s health.
He underlined that Buhari will not back any presidential candidate without the APC’s approval in 2023.
“Yes, that meeting did happen, but it is all about goodwill and best wishes,” Adesina replied when asked about the meeting’s purpose.
“We know that Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu had been in London about the same time the President was there. We don’t believe what we read on social media, but we have read a lot about Asiwaju Tinubu’s health, so the President’s visit was a goodwill visit.”
“The President still has two years less three months in his tenure of office,” Adesina said when asked if the visit was a show of support for Tinubu’s potential presidential bid. So, for him to support someone now would be like jumping the gun, which you know President Buhari will never do.
“Before the 2019 elections, people began to campaign for him (Buhari) before INEC blew the whistle for the campaign to start. He was the one who came out to say ‘no, don’t do it; don’t jump the gun’; the President himself will dare not jump the gun in terms of supporting one candidate or the other.
“Also, recall that he had said anybody that wants to be President after him should go out and work; that means the President may not be supporting anybody until maybe perhaps a candidate of the party emerges. Knowing President Buhari, he will never jump the gun.”
The president lingered in London to consult his doctors after attending the Global Education Summit on Financing Global Partnership for Education and returned to the country on Friday.
On Thursday, Buhari paid a visit to Tinubu, who is also reported to be in London for medical reasons.
Tinubu thanked the President for paying him a visit on August 12 in London.
“The visit was a warm and welcome one that emphasized the compassionate and caring demeanour of our nation’s President and Commander-in-Chief,” the APC leader said in a statement released by his media aide, Tunde Rahman.
“By this gesture, Mr. President has, again, demonstrated his personal thoughtfulness and humility; defying the erroneous commentaries peddled by his critics.
“Once again, Asiwaju thanks President Buhari for taking the time to visit him and wishes the President nothing but the very best as his administration continues to govern and lead the nation.”