“It’s my turn actually!” An elated Bola Tinubu enthused an hour after he was declared the President-Elect of Nigeria by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Wednesday morning.
“I am profoundly humbled to serve as the 16th President of our beloved country. This is a shining moment in the life of any man and an affirmation of our democratic existence,” he added.
The former Lagos State Governor and presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) thanked all those who participated in the February 25 election with particular mention of ‘Articulated’, ‘Obidients’, ‘Batified’ and ‘Kwankwasiyya’ supporters.
“I take this opportunity to appeal to my fellow contestants to let us team up together. It is the only nation we have. It is one country and we must build together,” he said.
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Tinubu, 70, came out tops in 12 of Nigeria’s 36 states, and secured significant numbers in several other states to claim the highest number of votes — 8,794,726, almost two million votes more than his closest rival — former Vice President Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Abubakar, 76, who has now run for president six times, got 6,984,520 votes, while the candidate of the Labour Party (LP), Peter Obi, who, in less than a year, galvanised young voters in a manner some have described as unprecedented finished the race with 6,101,533.
Tinubu’s road to victory was far from being smooth. To earn his party’s ticket for the race, he had to contend with heavyweights and partymen such as Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, Senate President Ahmad Lawan and former Transportation Minister, Rotimi Amaechi, among others to win his party’s ticket.
Frustrated with the seeming lack of support from the President and reported opposition by key members of the Presidency, he would go on to make his now famous “Emilokan (It is my turn)“ speech on June 2, 2022.
“It is the turn of Yoruba, it is my turn,” he said while addressing party delegates at the Presidential Lodge in Abeokuta, Ogun State.