• Features
  • Updated: January 18, 2023

ANALYSIS: How Loved Is Bola Tinubu In The Southwest?

ANALYSIS: How Loved Is Bola Tinubu In The Southwest?

Bola Tinubu , APC Presidential Aspirant for the 2023 elections

The sun is always bright both on those who love nature's masterpiece or otherwise. The presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu has become daylight in southwest Nigeria. But does the southwest majority love him so much as it is being painted? 

As we count down to the presidential election in February, Tinubu and the APC have rubber-stamped the southwest as their stronghold. 

The spokesman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential campaign council, Festus Keyamo, insisted on Arise TV on Monday that the southwest is Bola Tinubu's paradise.

But political facts say otherwise.

It might not be an electoral hallucination as the opposition party, PDP terms it but a political exaggeration to instil confidence in APC supporters at best.

Some Yoruba elites don't want him  

In the Yoruba elite's circle, Bola Tinubu is not a popular figure.

So, even if one argues that the two-term governor holds the aces in the Southwest, it does not apply to most Yoruba think tanks.

According to Dr Festus Adedayo who was featured on a popular radio programme in Ibadan recently, one of the scourges of the Afenifere has been Asiwaju Tinubu.

"Three people have stalled Afenifere cum Egbe Omo Oodua since inception; Dr Nnamdi Azikwe, Chief Samuel Ladoke Akintola and Asiwaju Bola Tinubu", the popular columnist detailed.

Tinubu over the years has always been against the notable Yoruba social structures including  Afenifere, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, Yoruba Nation agenda, Pastor Tunde Bakare, and many others.

Whether deliberately or not, he is always at the opposing end of the regional coin.

Tinubu was the main opposition when Olusegun Obasanjo was running his presidential adventure.

It has brought unending enmity between the duo that could even persist when they depart this earth.

Objectively speaking, some southern elites feel Tinubu has become too powerful.

For someone who has left the corridors of power since 2007, they are unhappy that he still possesses great influence in the country's politicking. 

The pushback could be of two ways; those who disagree with Tinubu because they see him as the only relevant political Godfather in the country. 

In truth, godfatherism is a direct attack on democracy.

Besides, the failure of Governor Akinwunmi Ambode to secure a second term is a handiwork of Tinubu according to the peddlers of this school of thought. 

There are also Tinubu's foes simply because of envy in the elite group. 

These individuals feel intimidated by how he has built a network, ironically called overhead bridges, across the country.

From Fayemi in Ekiti to Amosun in Ogun, Ganduje in Kano and Nnamani in Anambra, sections of the elites feel unhappy that he has done " too well for himself".

Some of his foot soldiers in the southwest are against him

According to yemiosinbajo.com, "Between 1999 and 2007, Osinbajo was a Member of the Cabinet of the Lagos State Government where he served as Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice''. Guess who was the governor at the time? Bola Timubu.

But the incumbent Vice President has opted to join in the administration of the country alongside Boss Mustapha, the SGF against joining one who nominated him for the VP post in his presidential campaign train.

It is safe to say that it is not such a big deal until you remember that Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, one of Tinubu's trustees also distances himself from the campaign voyage. 

Governor Aregbesola even worked against Tinubu's candidate in Osun State which ultimately brought the opposition PDP to office in the state.

Without a doubt, some of those who should have been beside Tinubu aren't ten miles close to him as far as the presidential election support is concerned. 

Just as it counted against him and his party in Osun where Ademola Adeleke cruised to victory because of an unresolved internal crisis in the APC, Tinubu's popularity in the southwest could also wane in the upcoming polls.

Not all southwest governors are on the ground for Jagaban

If you want to measure how loved a political gladiator is in a region, consider how many state governors are on his side.

Osun people voted against Tinubu and Governor Gboyega Oyetola in the state.

Seyi Makinde, a member of the PDP is the governor of Oyo state while Sanwo-Olu only won in Lagos with a slim margin in 2019.

The reality remains that we would have politically believed that the generality of southwest people love Tinubu if all six southwestern states are governed by members of his party.

The other tribes' effect 

The southwest is arguably the most accommodating and stateless region in the country. 

Counting from Lagos, the home away from home for everyone to Ibadan has become the abode for anyone because of its largesse or Akure which houses exports and foreign nationals down to Ekiti which is not predominantly Yoruba because of differences in language and dialect. 

One could say that the population in the southwest does not reflect a Yoruba monopoly.

The region has witnessed an influx of people from other tribes who have settled in to become " territorial landlords in different southwestern states".

Most of these people from the other tribes living in the southwest do not love Tinubu. 

According to Justina Okparaocha, a secondary school teacher in the southwest, she has her candidate and despite being a resident of Ibadan for over twenty years, she does not love the APC presidential candidate.

"I share the sentiment that Tinubu is one of the cabals.

"I won't also be voting for him though I will be voting here in Ibadan", she told our correspondent.

The Muslim-Muslim ticket 

Unlike the other five regions with religious commonness, the southwest has a religious balance of both Islamic and Christian faiths which have duopolised Nigeria's administrative hierarchy. 

Now that Bola Tinubu's party is parading the same faith ticket, many southwestern people will evaluate other voting options. 

Though it should be stated that the southwest has not built its political significance on religion in the recent elections (Osun, Ekiti and Ondo states), some religion-motivated voters wouldn't want to consider loving Tinubu to the extent of voting for him in the presidential poll.


APC presidential candidate, Bola Ahmed Tinubu is a southwest powerhouse not loved by certain sections in the region which many believe is his stronghold.

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Yusuf Adua
Yusuf Adua

Yusuf Adua is an investigative journalist passionate about politics, solution-based reporting and f...

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