The All Progressives Congress presidential candidate, Maj.-Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (rtd.), on Wednesday announced Prof. Yemi Osinbajo as his running mate, thus putting to an end, days of speculations on the issue.
Osinbajo was the Lagos State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice when the APC National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, was governor.
The Ogun State-born serving pastor of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, is married to a granddaughter of the late sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo.
Decked in a dark suit, a white shirt and a red tie, he promised, in his acceptance speech, to rebuild Nigeria with Buhari.
Before Buhari formally unveiled him at the APC national headquarters in Abuja, Tinubu had issued a statement in which he said that the APC presidential candidate offered him(Tinubu) the position of running mate.
The former Lagos State governor, who was reported to have had interest in the post, explained that he rejected the offer because of his decision to remain a bridge builder across all divides.
While presenting Osinbajo, Buhari said, “To assist me in this great task of securing Nigeria’s future, I have chosen a man of unimpeachable integrity, an excellent professional, a man of faith, a devoted family man and a role model to our fellow countrymen and women.
“He is a professor of Law and a Senior Advocate of Nigeria. An alumnus of the University of Lagos and the London School of Economics. He is a prodigious author who has to his credit several books on civil procedure in Nigerian superior courts.
“The vice-presidential candidate is a friend of the less privileged, compassionate and zealous in service.
“A man of uncommon humility, a loyal, dependable and selfless patriot. He is Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, who by the grace of God and the vote of Nigerians, will be the next vice-president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”
Buhari expressed gratitude to Nigerians for their growing support since his election as the APC presidential candidate for the February 14, 2015 poll.
According to him, the huge acceptance of the APC and his candidacy by Nigerians had boosted his resolve to lead the process of rebuilding Nigeria and securing “our future.”
He recalled that in his acceptance speech, he pledged to run an efficient government, fight corruption and indiscipline in “our national life” if elected president.
The APC candidate also promised to end the current regime of fear and uncertainty in the country and place priority on national security.
He pledged to rebuild our battered economy and reduce poverty by deliberate policies that would lead to the creation of jobs for Nigerian youths.
Buhari said, “The challenging process of rescuing our country and changing Nigeria for good has commenced. One of the first decisions that I have to make is the choice of my running mate.”
Explaining the delay in the announcement of his running mate, the former Head of State, said the method employed in choosing Osinbajo was “quite meticulous but yet rigorous.”
He said that it involved the establishment of objective criteria, broad consultations with party leaders and a few opinion leaders outside the party as well as interactions with a number of nominees.
Accepting the offer, Osinbajo said he was privileged to be offered the opportunity to serve as Buhari’s running mate. He explained that he had consulted widely before taking on the task.
The former commissioner said, “The task of rebuilding this nation is one to which I am fully committed. There can be no other President, Leader and commander that can lead that common sense revolution Nigeria urgently needs than Gen. Buhari.
“I will proudly serve this country with him. Gen. Buhari’s uprightness and fierce commitment to good governance are well known. It will be a privilege to work with him.
“I come to this assignment with a lot of hope and a resolve to be a part of this movement to bring Nigeria back to its lost glory. With the support of all Nigerians and the help of God, we shall make Nigeria work again.
“I will work with him and the party to restore hope and confidence in millions of our youths and provide comfort and security for millions of our countrymen and women.”