The leader of the Yoruba socio-political group, Afenifere, Ayo Adebanjo, has fired a salvo at the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, saying northerners will not vote for him.
Mr Adebanjo advised Mr Tinubu to withdraw for Labour Party (LP) candidate, Peter Obi, and save himself from the shame of losing at the polls.
He said this at the LP presidential campaign rally in Abeokuta on Saturday.
Mr Adebanjo, who was accompanied by another leader of Afenifere, Femi Okunronmu, at the rally, said Mr Tinubu would be disappointed by Northerners at the poll.
The Afenifere leader described the LP as the new National Democratic Coalition (NADECO) which according to him would save Nigerians from the misrule of the APC.
“All those that know Tinubu should tell him, I have always told and I will tell him again, the Northerners will not vote for him.
“He (Tinubu) should come back home now and support Obi because when they finally defeat him, he won’t have the courage to come back home again. If he comes back now, we will forgive him and take him back.
“I have told you before and I want to say it again, Labour Party is now NADECO. Those of us supporting Obi are the ones that want good governance, we want Nigeria to be better, we want to liberate ourselves from the captive of the ruling class.
“We are behind Obi, leaders of progressive movement are behind Obi. Those fradusters parading themselves as Yoruba do not love the country. Yorubas do not take things that do not belong to other tribes. A Yoruba has been president before,” Mr Adebanjo said.
Mr Obi had earlier paid a visit to the palace of the Alake of Abeokuta, Adedotun Gbadebo, before addressing the rally attended by mainly young people.After the rally, Mr Obi met the youth again at a town hall meeting at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library (OOPL).
At the meeting, he described Nigeria as the most insecure country in the world.
“For me, I have served the people of Anambra State and was rated as number 1 in the implementation of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the records are there.
“Even in the areas of education, I have taken people out of poverty without borrowing a kobo from anybody and I paid all the pensions being owed before I assumed office.
“So, let presidential candidates come out and show Nigerians what they have done in the past before aspiring to govern the country.
“We are determined for a new Nigeria; we want people who are confident, who are qualified for the job. This year’s elections is very essential, we can no longer be comfortable with incompetence. We want people who will show commitments; this job requires physical and mental energies. So, we want people who are ready for the job. Myself and Datti want to change Nigeria.
“Nigeria is a great country, but we have all allowed it to be in the hands of few who do not know how to manage it.”
Mr Adebanjo and Mr Tinubu have been political adversaries for over 20 years since they parted company in the defunct Alliance for Democracy party under which Mr Tinubu was elected governor of Lagos State in 1999.
After Mr Adebanjo announced the endorsement of Mr Obi last year, a group within the Afenifere organised a reception for Mr Tinubu at the home of a former leader of the group in Akure where they endorsed Mr Tinubu’s candidacy.