Two Former Governors Join Serving One in Nigeria’s 2023 Presidential Race

Two Nigerian former governors and a serving one have announced their intent to contest next year’s presidential elections.

Orji Kalu, a former governor of southeast Abia state, and current Ebonyi state governor David Umahi declared their ambition Tuesday to succeed President Muhammadu Buhari, whose second term ends on May 29, 2023.

“I am offering myself to serve our country by contesting the presidency,” Kalu announced a few hours after Umahi’s declaration.

Kalu served as governor of Abia from 1999 to 2003 and is now a senior member of the national legislature.

The declaration came a day after former Lagos Governor Bola Ahmed Tinubu announced his presidential bid.

“I came to inform President Buhari that I am ready to contest the presidential seat and I am eminently qualified to succeed the president next year,” he told journalists at the presidential villa in the capital Abuja.

Tinubu is a high-ranking member of the ruling party, the All Progressive Congress (APC). He played a vital role in the emergence of Buhari as the party’s presidential candidate and eventual winner of the 2015 presidential election.

Both the former and serving governors are members of the APC.​​​​​​​

Nigerians say they expect more declarations, especially from opposition politicians, in the days ahead as political activities in the country gather momentum.

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