Senator Adeseye Ogunlewe, a former minister of works, has said the South-West could deliver 20 million votes for Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, national leader of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), if he decides to contest in the 2023 presidential election.
Speaking with Daily Independent, Ogunlewe, who described Tinubu as the most prominent politician in the South-West, said the reason northern politicians were bragging about retaining power beyond 2023 was their voting strength.
According to the former chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), it is alarming that despite having 16 million registered voters in the 2019 general elections in the South-West, less than four million people, representing 17 percent voting populace, voted in the 2019 general election.
He said: “Let us wait and see what happens. Let the man (Tinubu) come back home and solidify the South-West votes.
“The South-West can produce 20 million votes if we all work together and if we are serious about it. Is it not votes?
“Why the Northern elders are saying all this is because their people vote. They don’t joke with votes during election.
“Only 17 percent of South-West people voted in the last election while the North had 34 percent. We are targeting 60 percent votes in the 2023 elections, and we are going to be prepared for it.
“That is the way to be scientific in any political argument. Anything they are saying in the North is because of their voting strength.
“What is our own arrangement here? When they were talking of collection of voter cards, people who were in Boko Haram-ravaged territories in the North-East collected their voter cards more than us here in the South. Rather than go out and enlighten people on the need to collect their cards, our own is to pull people down.”
Ogunlewe, who said he joined the APC five months ago but was yet to officially decamp until he gets 20,000 registered members, said rather than saying negative things about Tinubu, it was time for politicians in the South to come together and mobilise people to vote in the 2023 general election.
“My own is, the South-West has enough votes to win the 2023 presidential election if we are serious. Lagos State alone can give five million votes if we are serious.