2019 Presidential Poll: How Feasible Are Durotoye And Sowore?

Nigeria News takes a look at the youths who have signified their intention to run for Nigeria’s presidential seat.


At the time President Muhammadu Buhari’s public acceptance is dwindling on social media platforms, there is a growing trend of new faces, mostly youths who have shown interest in the president’s seat.


The new sets of aspirants are becoming popular by the day on social media and I doubt if they have ever thought that running for Nigeria’s presidential seat goes beyond media acceptance.


I had an encounter with a church girl who was so sure that the next Nigeria’s president would come from the southwest and is the popular motivational speaker, Mr Fela Durotoye.


I have had the opportunity to share the same space with Durotoye at a programme hosted by Funmi Iyanda on NTA, “New Dawn” some years ago. I was the education correspondent for the Punch then and my column had tempted Iyanda to invite Durotoye and me to share our thoughts with secondary school pupils.  I wrote more on WAEC, JAMB and NECO then.


That was the first time I met Durotoye and became his fan before the close of the programme. Over the years, I have listened to Durotoye and I think he has what it takes to lead. He is a “leadership” teacher of course.


But, I have asked severally that besides the southwest and parts of eastern Nigeria that are educationally sophisticated and appreciate intellectual discourse, does Durotoye’s popularity reach the north?


I don’t think so, even though he is a household name in the southwest. Fine, Durotoye trends easily on social media, it does not translate to winning a presidential seat in Nigeria of today with the present structure.


How I wish he could contest and win but frankly, the Nigeria presidential seat encompasses so many visible and invisible factors that millions of Durotoye cannot see.


Another is the publisher of the Sahara Reporter online, Mr Omoyele Sowore who also wishes to be Nigerian president. He is popular on social media too.


Social Media is good for mobilisation. But Nigeria’s case is a special case. There is a North-South divide, which Sowore and co vying for the 2019 Presidency are not interested in.


This division goes beyond our ethnic diversity. Education and exposure are key. The South is better educated than the North. Southerners are more exposed than those up North. So, social media can work in the South, politically than up North.


On the political side, Public Opinion is key in any election followed by Finance. But both will always play second fiddle to Structure in a Third World democracy like ours. Those who hold the structure firmly in their hands remain in PDP and APC. A political party that’ll produce a Sowore or others like him as President will need at least 10 years of ceaseless work to get there.


Lastly, Nigeria of today politically operates a two-level system in terms of North and South when it comes to the Presidential election. Nigeria’s next President will most likely be a person of Northern extraction, going by the unwritten rules of the game in this part of the world.

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