Presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, has dispelled insinuation that he was nursing a plot to relocate Nigeria’s federal capital territory (FCT) from Abuja to Lagos State.
According to rumours making the rounds, Tinubu, a former Lagos State governor, has concluded arrangements to return the nation’s capital to Lagos 32 years after former military president, Ibrahim Babangida, had relocated it from Lagos to Abuja on December 12, 1991.
But, Tinubu, in a statement issued on Tuesday by the director, Media and Publicity of the APC presidential campaign council, Bayo Onanuga, refuted the claim, expressing shock that such a rumour could be hatched.
Onanuga said, “The All Progressives Congress Presidential Campaign Council hereby alerts Nigerians about the latest insidious campaign in some parts of the country against our candidate, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu. After exhausting their arsenal of calumnies and character assassination against Tinubu, the opposition PDP and their surrogate Labour Party have begun a multi-pronged desperate campaign of falsehoods.
“In one of the falsehoods being circulated, especially in the North West of the country, Tinubu is said to harbour plans to relocate the Federal Capital from Abuja to Lagos on succeeding President Muhammad Buhari from 29th May, 2023. This misinformation campaign, according to field reports, is being given some traction by some elders on the payroll of the Peoples Democratic Party.
“We are shocked that some people could contrive such egregious lie, all in the name of politics, with the intention to confuse our burgeoning support base in that part of the country. Let us say with emphasis, that Asiwaju does not contemplate any such plan and will not do anything that is so ultra-unconstitutional.”
Tinubu further noted that those peddling the latest falsehood have also been distorting the commercialisation of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited by the Buhari administration.
“The truth is that President Buhari has not privatised NNPC as planned by the PDP presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar. Buhari has instead made it a commercial entity, owned by all the tiers of government, in line with the Petroleum Industry Act.
“In due course, the company will be in a position to declare and share dividends to all its owners, the way Aramco of Saudi Arabia and Petrobas of Brazil do. As the destined successor of President Buhari, Asiwaju Tinubu will continue the policy of the Buhari administration. Unlike Atiku, Tinubu has no plan to sell NNPC to his friends or cronies,” he added.