The upcoming general elections in 2023 may well prove to be one of the fiercest electoral battles in Nigeria’s history. Although 18 presidential candidates from various political parties are eyeing the seat of President Muhammadu Buhari, THE WILL focuses on the three main political gladiators.
In this three-part series and still in the spirit of the country’s independence anniversary, IVORY UKONU and SHADE WESLEY-METIBOGUN unveil celebrities, entertainers and socialites who pitched their tents with their favorite presidential candidates.
This week, the spotlight is on those supporting Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate Atiku Abubakar:
Ikechukwu Sunday Okonkwo
The third runner-up of Big Brother Naija reality show Season 6, Ikechukwu Sunday Okonkwo otherwise known as Cross is an ardent supporter of Atiku Abubakar.
The fitness enthusiast took to Twitter to publicly declare his support for Atiku last June. Cross’s love for Atiku dates back to when he was still young. According to him, he has known Atiku for many years, lived with him and even shared the same bed with his children.
Cross revealed that at some point in his life, when he had nowhere to go, Atiku took him in and took care of him. He therefore considers Atiku as his family. While looking to back the former vice president recently, Cross swore that Atiku was the best of the top three presidential contenders. He also said the politician means well for the Nigerian youth.
Singer Paul Dairo aka Paul Play is not only a card-carrying member of the PDP but also a strong supporter of Atiku Abubakar. He does, however, support it from the UK where he is based. He is also the Director of Entertainment for the Atiku Care Foundation, a non-governmental organization set up to care for the less privileged at the local level while introducing the man, Atiku Abubakar to the world by bringing him closer to the grassroots.
A few months ago, when veteran actor, Dele Odule joined the PDP, he publicly announced his interest in partisan politics. According to him, the reason for pledging allegiance to the political party and its standard bearer was to make way for the liberation of his people in Oru-Ijebu, a community in Ogun State, as the candidate had promised him” party’s embattled governor. in the state, Ladi Adebutu.
The actor recalled the good things that Ladi, a former lawmaker, did for the entertainment industry when he was in the National Assembly, which is said to have had a positive impact on the industry.
Adebutu had sponsored a bill which reached second reading in the House of Representatives. Unfortunately, his progress was blocked by his inability to return home. However, Adebutu has promised to help the actor and his community when he is elected governor of the state.
Musical artist, David Adeleke, popularly known as Davido, has been an avid follower and supporter of the PDP. His uncles are party members. One of them, the late Alhaji Isiaka Adeleke, was a former governor of Osun State and the other, Senator Ademola Adeleke, is the current governor-elect of the state.
By extension, Davido supports the presidential ambition of Atiku Abubakar. The latter also reciprocated the love the singer showed his party by rocking out to his Stand Strong music while unveiling his five-star relaunch plan last week.
Nollywood actor John Okafor also known as Mr Ibu has never hidden his love for Atiku Abubakar and the need to support his ambition to become the next President of Nigeria. He reiterated that fact when he had to correct a misconception after honoring an invitation from Bola Tinubu, the presidential flag bearer of the All Progressives Congress (APC). Many people had assumed that he had pitched his tent with Tinubu. But the comic act has made it known that its candidate of choice is the PDP presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar. He revealed this even before Atiku declared his intention to run for the position.
According to him, his support for the former vice president of Nigeria is the result of personal conviction and Atiku’s pedigree. The politician has been a benefactor to the actor, who sees him as a father and he said he wouldn’t give up on him when he needed him.
The actor clarified that if he is seen with another contestant, it means his service as an actor was needed there at the time, but it does not mean he has changed roles. allegiance to his benefactor.
“I never ran sideways, it was me and Atiku who helped me in so many ways and if he runs for president, Atiku is definitely my candidate. Atiku is like a father to me, having worked for him even in his own state so I wouldn’t give up on him. I’m not trying to take down Tinubu but he’s not my candidate, Atiku is my candidate. Anyone I’ve visited is not only one visit. As an actor, they wanted me to assist them in some way. That doesn’t mean that I abandoned my candidate and my father,” he said.
Nollywood actress and producer, Funke Akindele is not only the supporter of Atiku Abubakar but also the running mate of Olajide Adediran, PDP candidate for Lagos State Governorship in 2023, for which she had to suspend her acting career. She used her platform to campaign for herself and Atiku.
Singer and actor, Bankole Wellington, aka BankyW, was a member of the Modern Democratic Party (MDP) through which he cut his political teeth in 2019 but was unsuccessful at the polls. He had to defect to the PDP where he landed a ticket to stand for National Assembly elections in the Federal Constituency of Eti-Osa, Lagos.
Wellington recently and openly supported the presidential ambitions of Atiku Abubakar. He gave Atiku a dignified welcome during his visit to Eti-osa Federal Constituency. He solicited votes for Atiku and himself, using his platform.
Reality TV star and former BBN housemate Chukwuemeka Okoye, popularly known as Frodd, is one of the youngsters backing the PDP presidential candidate. He was one of the youngsters who visited the politician along with some of his roommates and other content creators.
Bright Osemudiame, a former housemate of Big Brother Naija, showed his support for the PDP presidential candidate earlier this month after joining his colleagues to pay a courtesy call on the politician. One of the reasons the reality TV star visited Abubakar was to seek youth empowerment and involvement when Abubakar becomes president. He may have remained silent since then on the upcoming elections, but his visit to the politician indicates that he backs the PDP in 2023.
Reno Omokri, assistant to former President Goodluck Jonathan. is a strong supporter of Atiku Abubakar. He considers Atiku to be the best presidential candidate due to his track record as Nigeria’s vice president. Omokri uses his platform to encourage Nigerians to vote for his favorite candidate because he is “in good health”. The controversial social media influencer was pictured presenting a t-shirt to his favorite presidential candidate after endorsing him.