Dr Doyin Okupe, on Wednesday, withdrew his presidential ambition in the 2023 general elections for the aspiration of former Governor of Anambra State, Dr Peter Obi.
Okupe, a former presidential spokesman, had at a news conference in Abeokuta, said his decision could not be unconnected with the way and manner the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) was handling the issue of zoning.
The former presidential aspirant, thereby declared his support for Obi and urged the Governor of Rivers State, Nyesome Wike, Dele Momodu to equally throw their weight behind Obi.
He said that he conceded the presidential seat to the South East geo political zone of the country, based on principle of fairness and integrity which the Yoruba people were known for.
Okupe said he had consulted widely with some stakeholders in the South West zone and had come to the conclusion to toe the path of truth and justice by supporting the best presidential aspirant not only in the South East, but Nigeria as a whole.
“It is clear to me that those at the helm of affairs of the party are trying to hoodwink aspirants from the South to commit ourselves to obtain the requisite forms before coming up with the original position that every zone can contest the presidency.
“This position is politically fraudulent, unjust and inequitable.
“But as a politician, I have come to accept the ill-defined zoning arrangement, and still forge ahead with my unrepentant call for a rotation of power to the South. I have consulted far and wide with the political stakeholders in my zone.
“Two weeks ago, Pa Ayo Adebanjo called me for the first time into his bedroom and admonished me that no matter what circumstances we Yorubas find ourselves in the ever gyrating political circus of Nigeria, I must uphold the truth and follow the path of equity and justice.
“I am aligning myself with the wish of our elders and in the interest of equity and justice, I publicly admit that the 2023 political race must be conceded to the South-East, that is, the Igbos.
“My supporters and I within and outside the PDP are teaming up with Peter Obi.
“At the same time, I want to enjoin all other aspirants from the South, Dele Momodu, Sen Anyim Pius Anyim, and Gov. Nyesom Wike to come with me and team up with Peter Obi. So we can give the South the best possible chance,”he added.
Okupe opined that he was not fanning embers of division among the aspirants by his action, rather lightening the torch of unity by establishing political stability.