Vice President Prof. Yemi Osinbajo has said he has acquired the experience, understanding, and knowledge to hit the ground running from day one if he becomes the country’s President.
Osinbajo stated this on Friday in Osogbo, Osun State, while addressing party delegates as part of his national consultation visit ahead of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Presidential primary election.
He said although it takes one and a half to two years for a new person in government to understand the system and start to perform, in his own case, the almost eight years spent as vice president has positioned him to start working from day one.
“You all know why I’m here. The reason for my being here is because I have put myself forward as a presidential aspirant. I have served for eight years in government and I understand what it takes to govern this country,” he said.
“I have the knowledge, understanding, and experience to govern this country. I can hit the ground running from day one if I become the President of Nigeria. Everybody in government knows that it takes even a governor up to one year to understand the nitty-gritty of government.”
Prof. Osinbajo acknowledged the achievements of Governor Gboyega Oyetola, the progressive nature of members of the APC in the state, and the struggle to ensure that the Osun was being governed by the party.
Speaking during the event, Governor Oyetola, who was represented by his deputy, Benedict Alabi, appreciated Osinbajo for his visit and the recognition of the works and achievements of the administration.
“I want to start by appreciating the Vice President. On our way to the Palace, he sighted some of the good works of Mr Governor,” he stated.
On his part, the state Chairman of APC, Prince Gboyega Famodun, hailed the Vice President’s record of achievements through President Muhammadu Buhari.
Famodun said: “We are proud of you in the past seven years for serving us and all the achievements through Mr President. We have here 23 out of 26 members of the House of Assembly, all local government chairmen, party chairmen, and secretaries, as well as party leaders. We are represented from our different segments”.
Osinbajo had earlier visited the Ataojas of Osogbo, Oba Jimoh Olanipekun, who wished him well on his ambition.
The monarch urged Osinbajo to facilitate the completion of all abandoned Federal Government projects in the state before the forthcoming general elections.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, SAN, on Saturday interacted with stakeholders and delegates of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Jigawa State in Dutse, the state capital.
Prof. Osinbajo’s visit was in continuation of his nationwide consultations with APC stakeholders and delegates and his main message was that for the 2023 elections, decisions should be based on what is in Nigeria’s best interest.
On arrival, the Vice President was received by a crowd of supporters at the airport and on the streets, APC Chieftains and senior state government officials led by the Secretary to the State Government Abdulkadir Fanini Adamu, who represented Governor Muhammad Badaru Abubakar, who was out of town at the time of the visit.
At the townhall style interaction with the delegates, which also featured a question and answers session, the Vice President restated his view that decisions about the 2023 elections be based on what is best for the country, its destiny, and future as a nation.
Osinbajo said “we should make a decision based on the future of our children… We can make progress; we can move on. All I ask you to do is what is in the best interest of Nigeria; vote in the interest of our children”.
He restated how his training and experience in governance, serving as VP under President Muhammadu Buhari, would help him to lead the country effectively if given the ticket and elected under the APC platform.
“As Vice President, the President has given me an opportunity that I do not think any other vice president has been given,” he said.
Later while speaking during a brief chat with the media after the meeting, Prof. Osinbajo noted that he was happy with the interactions with the Jigawa delegates.
“Obviously, all the issues that we discussed are issues that concern the country very significantly. We talked about agriculture, we talked about youth empowerment, education, technology, and a wide variety of issues,” the VP added.
“I think it was extremely fruitful, and at least we all understand where we are coming from and where we ought to be in the few years ahead. All of us are very happy that we were able to have this engagement.”
Delegates who spoke during the interactive session included members of the State House of Assembly, local government officials, grassroots leaders and women leaders.
Many of the delegates spoke about the successes of the Social Investment Programmes (SIP), especially the National Homegrown School Feeding Programme, which the delegates recalled offered first-time jobs for several women.
They also commended the VP’s contributions in that respect while praising other achievements of the Buhari administration including efforts to make fertilizer available and affordable, a benefit much enjoyed in Jigawa State.
Others at the interaction highlighted the reputation of the VP as “a man of proven integrity and fear of God,” and his “excellent track record, loyalty, and support of Mr. President”.
Generally, several delegates believe that if the VP becomes elected as President he should expand the SIP, and ensure youth and women engagements in government while providing federal support to Jigawa State agrarian economy.
The Vice President described as very fruitful the conversations he had with the people, noting that their recommendations were valid.
Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, has described consultations with people as critical in governance and important for national development.
He said this is especially important for a country as diverse and complex as Nigeria.
The Vice President stated this on Sunday at the Presidential Villa during a dinner with speakers and deputy speakers and some members of the State Houses of Assembly.
“Government by the partnership is so important. That is the kind of relationship that I think makes governance easier. The only way to make a complex country like this work is by consultations. There is no other way,” the VP declared.
He also stated that he would apply this partnership model in governance if he was nominated by the All Progressives Congress (APC) as its presidential flagbearer, and is elected as President of Nigeria. He also restated the value of his experience to lead Nigeria as President in 2023.
“In terms of training on the job, I think I am quite well trained. So, I believe very strongly that, although there are other contestants who are also very capable and competent, I believe that just in terms of readiness, I think that if there is anyone who is prepared for that, I am certain that person.
“So, if by the grace of God, I am nominated by the party and the electorate, I think that God helping us, we will be able to do much in office. And one of the very important things for me is what I would describe as a partnership.”
While interacting with the visiting speakers and their deputies from across the country, the VP recalled his tour of the Niger Delta in 2017, on behalf of the President, which birthed the administration’s Niger Delta New Vision, and restored peace and stability, among other significant development gains in the region.
Osinbajo said “people want to be engaged, they want to be spoken to, they want to hear what government is doing, they want you to hear what their opinions are.
“That engagement taught me something very crucial, the most important thing of all in this country, is for us to be able to sit down and talk on any issue. People want to be able to express their views, and they want to be heard/helped, and we must create the time to hear them and understand their views.
“Whatever policy that is, engagement is always the best approach, I think that has succeeded in so many instances. I am confident that the partnership model is one that will always work.”
He highlighted the partnership relationship between the Presidency and the 36 State Governors despite party differences, and how it led to President Muhammadu Buhari approving a bailout to states to pay workers’ salaries, budget support facilities, and Paris Debt refunds among other packages from the Federal Government in the past years.
The VP said “the reason why we were able to, from day one, without discriminating along party lines, why we were able to ensure that all sides of this outstanding salaries were paid as soon as we got into office was just because we had established that (partnership) from day one. So, the governors were able to come to us to say there is a problem here, how do we solve it?
“The special packages that we put together for the States were on the basis of a partnership, we all worked together to ensure that there is success all round. I think that the governors would testify that that partnership model is a model that has worked.”
Similarly, Prof. Osinbajo noted that this partnership has also helped in the cordial working relationships with all state governors under the auspices of the National Economic Council (NEC) which the VP chairs.
In their remarks, the speakers and deputy speakers commended the Vice President for his efforts in the Buhari administration and in the general development of the country, while many of them endorsed his aspiration to become president in 2023.
Pledging his support for the VP, Speaker of the Niger State House of Assembly, Hon. Abdullahi Wuse noted that the VP has the best capacity to lead from 2023.
“Few people have the intellectual capacity, the capabilities that you are exhibiting as the Vice President of this country. We look forward to a situation where you will be the President. I believe that you will do more if given the opportunity to be president of this country,” he said.
The Ogun State House of Assembly Speaker, Olakunle Oluomo, noted that Nigerians everywhere appreciated the Vice President, who he said has shown total capacity in leadership. According to him, the country will experience transformation if the VP is elected president in 2023.
“His coming will accelerate a lot of development in this country; also he will hit the ground running,” he added.
Also speaking, Katsina State House of Assembly Speaker, Hon. Tasiu Musa-Maigari, commended the Vice President’s “good qualities of leadership, honesty, hard work and loyalty,” adding that the VP would make a very good President.
In a similar vein, the Nasarawa State House of Assembly Speaker, Ibrahim Abdullahi, said, “we appreciate your capacity and intelligence. And we are thankful that we have somebody like Mr. Vice President in this country. We don’t need to be reminded that even Mr. President trusts you so much, and trusts your capacity. You love this country, and we are sure by the time Mr. Vice President takes over from President Muhammadu Buhari, you will start where he ends.
“By the special grace of God, the Vice President will take over the ticket of the APC. We are going to line up behind you. If truly, we want this country to prosper, this is the time to rally around Mr. Vice President. It is not about religion; it is about capacity. We are sure of your capacity and we are sure you are going to take us to the next level.”
While he told the Oba he is in the state for political reasons, Osinbajo said he deemed it appropriate to make the Palace his first stop.
The visit to the palace, the Vice President explained, is to inform the Oba of his intention to run for president in the coming election. He also said he is in the state to consult with members of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
On his part, the Oba of Benin said he admires the Vice President’s eloquence, calmness, humility, respect for culture, and fear of God. He also thanked him for having respect for culture.
The Oba also believes that putting the electorate first should be a priority for political officeholders. He, however, regretted that while politicians make promises, and use all sorts of tactics, they eventually do not put the electorate first.
Oba Ewuare, therefore, appealed to politicians not to continue in that trend.
He noted that the country is blessed with resources but wondered why there’s suffering and poverty and crime.
The monarch, who reminded Osinbajo that he (VP) is a cleric, said if he emerges as president, he would have a lot on his shoulders to turn things around.
According to him, the VP is eminently qualified for the position as he prayed that the voters hear his voice. He wished Osinbajo well in the pursuit.
President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday swore in four permanent secretaries.
The event happened during the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting held at the State House in Abuja.
The new permanent secretaries include Mrs Beatrice Jeddy-Agba, Kachollom Daju, Malla Shehu Ibrahim, Dr Mary Ogbe.`
Those physically present at the oath-taking were the President Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo; Secretary to Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha; Chief of Staff to the President, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari and the Head of Civil Service of the Federation, Doctor Folashade Yemi-Esan.
Also in attendance were the ministers of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed; Justice, Abubakar Malami; Agriculture, Mohammed Mahmood; Mines and Steel Development, Olamilekan Adegbite; Labor and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige; Minister of Power, Abubakar Aliyu and that of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, among others.
Other ministers attended virtually from their various offices in Abuja.
Shortly after the meeting commenced, the cabinet observed a minute silence for a former Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture; Aviation, Tonye Graham-Douglas, who died recently at the age of 82.
Oba Babatunde Adewale Ajayi has extolled Vice President Yemi Osinbajo’s leadership qualities, praising his impact when he was the acting president.
The Akarigbo of Remoland in Ogun State made the remark when the vice president visited the monarch in his palace on Tuesday.
“We are all living witnesses to when our son was in charge as Acting President. We saw the difference in our country, and that was just within a matter of weeks and months,” a statement from Osinbajo’s media aide Laolu Akande quoted him as saying.
“What would now happen if he becomes President for 4 years or 8 years? This country will undergo tremendous change.”
We joined the Vice President, @ProfOsinbajo, GCON today on his consultation visit to some of our paramount rulers in Ogun State at the palaces of the Akarigbo of Remoland, the Alake of Egbaland, and the Olu of Ilaro. pic.twitter.com/uzslGCp7VH
The monarch, who acknowledged divine supremacy in the choice of leaders, asked God to give the All Progressives Congress (APC) the wisdom and strength to work for the betterment of the country.
According to the Akarigbo, the VP, “by the grace of God, you will get there. Your light will continue to shine. It’s with such humility that I look at your life and I see the trajectory of what God has done… Mr Vice President, your journey is still long, but we will uphold you with prayers. Your days will be long, and you will continue to shine; the good Lord will continue to shine upon you, and at the end of the day, we will see that there is light at the end of the tunnel”.
Earlier, the former Commissioner for Justice and Attorney General of Lagos State said he is prepared for the presidential post, citing his years of service in various capacities.
“With utmost humility, it is now evident that if there is anybody, any candidate, or aspirant, who on day one can hit the ground running, who on day one knows what to do, who will not spend another two years trying to decide what to do, that person is your son, Oluyemi Osinbajo. That is the objective truth,” he said.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has promised to hit the ground running if elected as the country’s president in the 2023 poll.
Osinbajo made the remark while addressing his supporters in Ogun State on Tuesday, explaining that he is prepared for the challenge of leading the country.
“With utmost humility, it is now evident that if there is anybody, any candidate, or aspirant, who on day one can hit the ground running, who on day one knows what to do, who will not spend another two years trying to decide what to do, that person is your son, Oluyemi Osinbajo. That is the objective truth,” he told the supporters.
According to him, in the past years, he has garnered enough experience needed to lead Nigeria.
The former lecturer believes his exposure to the rudiments of leadership sets him apart from the rest.
“After I was appointed as vice-president, I had the unique opportunity of serving under President Muhammadu Buhari, who exposed me to practically every aspect of governance. He exposed me to various things in government, especially sensitive issues in government. I then had the opportunity to serve as acting president on several occasions,” the vice president said.
“I know that governing at the highest levels in our country requires some experience. And after a period of seven-and-a-half years of working as vice-president, seeing what many people have never seen, being able to participate at both local and international levels of governance, being able to tackle very sensitive issues of governance, I know that God didn’t provide those opportunities simply so that I’ll go and sit down and write my memoir. No. God does not make mistakes. He provided those opportunities such that one day, I will be called upon to serve in the highest capacity — to serve as president of our nation.
“The opportunity to do so is an important one. And let nobody tell us any stories about that. The truth of the matter is that everywhere where I have served, I’ve served with utmost loyalty, and commitment. I have put my reputation on the line — sometimes, even life. There is nowhere that those I served will not say I put in everything to make sure they succeed.”
The wife of the President, Aisha Buhari, on Saturday hosted presidential aspirants and called on political parties and their candidates to reserve a certain percentage of elective positions for women.
The special Iftar, which she organised for presidential aspirants in the 2023 election, was held in Abuja.
Mrs Aisha Buhari also urged them to create a fair playing ground for the 2023 general elections.
The event attracted several presidential aspirants and dignitaries including former Lagos State governor, Bola Tinubu; Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi State; Governor Dave Umahi of Ebonyi; Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State; a former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara; Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige and Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio among others.
While Vice President Yemi Osinbajo did not attend the event, his wife, Mrs Dolapo Osinbajo, was present at the dinner.
The APC National Women Leader, Betta Edu, also attended the Iftar.
As Christians in Nigeria join other faithful worldwide to celebrate Easter Sunday, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo (SAN), has assured Nigerians of the restoration of peace and a more prosperous future for all regardless of current challenges.
Prof. Osinbajo stated this on Sunday in a chat with journalists shortly after the Easter Sunday service at the State House Chapel, Aso Villa, Abuja.
“My message is really a prayer. The resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ is a defining moment for us Christians. And one of the most important things to bear in mind is the resuscitation of hope,” the VP was quoted as saying in a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media & Publicity, Laolu Akande.
“Where there is despair, I pray that hope would be restored, where there is fear, I pray that there is courage and confidence. Where there is deprivation, I pray that there is prosperity, and there is abundance.”
The Vice President added that “there may be things that appear dead but the power of the resurrection is one that assures us that life will come after death, so we are completely confident especially for our country that everywhere we suffer deprivation, there will be restoration, and that is the promise of the resurrection.”
Easter Sunday is celebrated worldwide by Christians to mark the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. Joining the VP and his wife, Mrs Dolapo Osinbajo at the Aso Villa Chapel for the service were Sen. Emmanuel Bwacha and Hon. Danjuma Shiddi both from Taraba State, and other senior officials in the presidency.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has called for an end to global energy poverty in Africa, this is ahead of the next conference on Climate Change scheduled for Egypt.
The Vice President is advocating climate justice for Africa, noting that a just transition would mean more energy and must include ending global energy poverty.
Prof. Osinbajo stated this at a virtual event on climate finance themed “Climate Finance and a Just, Equitable Energy Transition for Africa”, organized by The Atlantic Council.
The Atlantic Council is a nonpartisan organization that galvanizes US leadership and engagement in the world, in partnership with allies and partners, to shape solutions to global challenges.
According to Prof. Osinbajo, “we are already seeing the investment rules limit the technology choices of African countries in ways that do not apply to wealthy nations. Applying a set of standards to Africa that you can’t apply in your own country is the opposite of climate justice.”
Continuing, the VP said “if the global energy transition is going to become reality, if we are true, in this climate crisis together, then the priorities of African nations cannot be sidelined. Climate justice must include far greater support for countries with the greatest needs and who contribute the least to global emissions.
“It must include investments, not only to mitigate carbon emissions but also to ensure that developing countries can adapt to the impacts of climate change caused by the rich polluting nations. Climate justice must include ending energy poverty. Anything else would be the opposite of justice.”
Speaking to the issue of a just and equitable transition for Africa and others, the VP said “what is a just transition for countries with no coal and deep energy poverty? A Just Energy Transition means something very different for every other African country, including my own country, Nigeria. For us, a Just Transition means a lot more energy, not less.”
He noted that “climate justice must include ending global energy poverty. Every person on the planet deserves to have modern energy. Every person deserves a job. All modern economies require abundant affordable and reliable energy.
“And with the impacts of climate change bearing down on us, every nation must have enough energy to build resilient infrastructure, deliver essential public services, and provide the cooling and air conditioning to withstand a warming planet. I’ll say this again: climate justice must include ending energy poverty.”
On expectations at the forthcoming Conference of Parties, tagged COP27, in Egypt later in the year, Prof. Osinbajo said “every nation must play its part in solving the dual crises of global poverty and climate change.”
His words: “Africa must be committed to solving both of these emergencies because both poverty and a warming planet affect us more than any other region. We are absolutely clear that Africa must be proactive, we must be assertive of our needs, and we must do a better job of making our views heard. That is what to expect in Egypt.”
In Nigeria, the Vice President noted that the country remains committed to the net-zero emission by 2060 but would require the support and partnership of other stakeholders.
“Nigeria will require huge investments in new infrastructure. We’re going to build more roads, ports, industrial parks, and especially power systems. For every Nigerian to consume the Modern Energy Minimum of 1,000 kilowatt-hours per year by 2050 would require a 15-fold increase in our national power generation.
“To ensure every household has access to cleaner cooking will require access to LPG, biogas and electric cooking for the tens of millions of families still cooking with wood and charcoal.”
He also explained that “an immediate priority is to create 20 million jobs and rebuild our industries. We must add more than 200 gigawatts of new power capacity, principally utility-scale solar by 2060.
“We will need to upgrade our power infrastructure, especially for transmission and distribution, using a strategic mix of grid and mini-grid systems. To be successful we will need partners.
“The majority of investment in our energy transition will come from our own national resources. But we estimate we need an additional $410 billion above business-as-usual investment to meet our goals.”
Another point raised at the meeting by Prof. Osinbajo was the use of alternative technologies. He stressed that “every country must find its own path to a low carbon future. The EU decision to label both gas and nuclear as green energy is a clear recognition that Europe knows that countries need a wide range of options.
“The United States too has a long-term plan that includes an array of different technologies that meet the needs of diverse communities across the country. Africa too will find its own path. Africa too will use an array of technologies that meet the needs of diverse countries across the continent.”
The VP expressed optimism that Africa will get it right at COP27, noting that “Egypt will be a crucial moment for African leaders to explain their common position and for Western leaders to show they are hearing us and living up to their commitments and responsibilities.
“Egypt can be a turning point for fighting climate change and for ending global poverty. The win-win is there for the world to grasp. We can succeed. But only if the needs of developing countries are heard.”
The Climate Finance virtual event is one of the preludes to the COP27 event scheduled to hold in Egypt later in the year to further galvanize efforts toward a just transition.