Tinubu travels to France amid running mate controversy

The presidential standard bearer of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, left the country for France on Monday.

Tinubu left Nigeria shortly after holding a closed meeting with the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (Ret’d) at the Presidential Villa in Abuja in the morning.

This was contained in a statement released by Tinubu’s spokesman, Tunde Rahman, in Abuja.

The statement said in part: “He left for Paris, France, to hold important meetings. The standard bearer of the APC should soon return to the country.

The development comes following Tinubu’s statement on Sunday that he was still looking for his running mate for the 2023 presidential election.

Although Rahman did not indicate how long the former Lagos State governor would be out, there were insinuations that his trip must have had something to do with consulting his running mate.

The development comes following a controversy over claims by Tinubu that he lost his university certificates while submitting to the Independent National Electoral Commission.

The APC national leader said he is still studying how Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hakeem Gbajabiamila, and Deputy Speaker, Ahmed Wase, worked harmoniously, in his search for a running mate.

He said so during the presentation of a book titled “Mr. Speaker: The Legislative Life, Service and Resilience of Femi Gbajabiamila and the unveiling of a legislative mentorship initiative to mark the senator’s 60th birthday”.

The punch reported that the APC’s northern governors of North West and North East were split over choosing a suitable running mate for the party’s presidential candidate, Tinubu.

A party leader, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said The punch that the delay in finding an acceptable candidate among the governors prompted the party to temporarily opt for a reserved space.

The APC had submitted the name of a party leader in Katsina State, Ibrahim Masari, to the Independent National Electoral Commission as a running mate.

Masari is a board member of the National Institute for Policy and Strategy Studies in Kuru, Plateau State.

The source told one of our correspondents that nine days after Masari’s name was submitted to the INEC, the APC had still not found a candidate.

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