Former presidential aide, Dr Doyin Okupe, has revealed that his son, Ditan, may have joined the re-election campaign of President Muhammadu Buhari to get back at him over their serious issues.
The spokesperson for the President Muhammadu Buhari Campaign Organisation, Festus Keyamo, announced on his Twitter account on Thursday, November 8, 2018, that Ditan had joined the president's re-election campaign despite his father being a vocal voice in the opposition People's Democratic Party (PDP).
Okupe was the chairman of the Media Council for the campaign organisation of Senate President, Bukola Saraki, when he contested for the PDP's presidential ticket. However, since he lost the ticket to former vice president, Atiku Abubakar, Okupe has been a vocal supporter of the party's candidate to defeat Buhari in the 2019 presidential election.
While announcing Ditan's involvement with Buhari's campaign on Thursday, Keyamo mockingly stated that Atiku's salesmen cannot sell the candidate to their children, clearly also referring to the case of Olujonwo, the son of former president, Olusegun Obasanjo, also an Atiku supporter for 2019, who met Buhari last week to pledge his support.
Keyamo posted, "Breaking ranks with their fathers for PMB: Ditan Okupe, 1st son of Atiku's man, Doyin Okupe, a UK-trained lawyer of 12 yrs post-call in Nig, volunteers to work 4 PMB's campaign team just like OBJ's son. Nigerian youths note: Atiku's salesmen cannot even sell him to their children."
In response to Keyamo's taunt, Okupe revealed that he has had serious issues with his son for the past five years. He took to his Twitter account to suggest that joining Buhari's campaign might be his son's way of hurting him.
He posted, "We both have had serious issues in the last 5 years. This may be his way of getting back at me."
He disclosed in another tweet that Ditan had been trying to contact his political foes like the national leader of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, to pull a similar stunt.
"...Ditan who also has been trying for months to get the contacts of people he considers my political foes, incl Tinubu, Kashamu, OGD etc. For him, this is his finest hour."
While explaining his reason for backing President Buhari in a letter he addressed to his campaign organisation, Ditan indicated that there's no better candidate to take Nigeria forward other than the president.
"It is my opinion that there is no better candidate aside from the current President, to take this great nation forward, into its predestined place. I also believe that the nation must do everything possible to prevent the opposition party and its cohorts back into the corridors of power to safeguard the future of this great country," he wrote.
2019 presidential election
While next year's presidential election, scheduled for February 16, 2019, is expected to be keenly-contested between President Buhari and Atiku, they both face competition from other candidates including Donald Duke of the Social Democratic Party (SDP), Kingsley Moghalu of the Young Progressive Party (YPP), Obiageli Ezekwesili of the Allied Congress Party of Nigeria (ACPN), Fela Durotoye of the Alliance for New Nigeria (ANN), and Omoyele Sowore of the African Action Congress (AAC).
Others are Tope Fasua of the Abundance Nigeria Renewal Party (ANRP), Eunice Atuejide of the National Interest Party (NIP), Olusegun Mimiko of the Zenith Labour Party (ZLP), Adesina Fagbenro-Byron of the Kowa Party (KP), Chike Ukaegbu of the Advanced Allied Party (AAP), Hamza Al-Mustapha of the People's Party of Nigeria (PPN), Obadiah Mailafia of the African Democratic Congress (ADC), and many more.
79 candidates will contest in the election, the highest number ever in Nigeria's electoral history.