Health Challenge: APC Minna Rally Ends Abruptly as Tinubu is Rushed Off Stage
- Why Tinubu left Minna rally early – APC PCC
The presidential candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, Bola Tinubu, was on Wednesday allegedly rushed off the stage at the party’s presidential rally in Minna due to poor health.
His media aides have however swiftly denied the report claiming that he was okay and indeed attended other functions after the rally.
It was gathered that Tinubu could not arrive in the Niger State capital in the morning for the rally as he had to attend to his health with specialist doctors rushed to attend to him on Tuesday, soon after he had made an appearance at the North West zone rally held at the Ahmadu Bello Stadium, Kaduna.
He was advised to rest that Tuesday evening after the rally, thus delaying his arrival in Minna until Wednesday. He arrived at the venue of the rally, which was well underway in the afternoon in Minna.
A source who revealed the development from Minna via telephone call further said that Tinubu was advised to avoid the Minna rally to take “a deserved rest” but his team insisted he must put up an appearance in order to cover up the development.
However, when he was ushered to the stage to speak in a live telecast monitored by our correspondent, the former Lagos State Governor could only shout the party’s name several times in a slow and incoherent manner.
“APC, APC, Niger! Nigeria, Nigeria! Sai Bago, Sai Bago, APC, APC!” Tinubu said on stage.
“Sai Lolo, Sai lolo,” he continued, after which he busted into laughter.
He kept shouting, “Sai Bago, sai jagaban”, a nickname he is known for as his voice kept diminishing.
He however continued shouting, “God bless you, God bless Niger State, may God bless you,” and was led away from the podium without presenting his manifesto and what he will do if he wins the 2023 presidential election.
The rally was thereafter cut short in a live beam monitored by this paper on the candidate’s television Station, TVC.
Tinubu is believed to be having a running battle with an undisclosed illness.
There have been several reports of the APC candidate being afflicted with Parkinson’s disease but he has kept mum on the development.
Why Tinubu left Minna rally early – APC PCC
In a swift reaction to the unsavoury development, the Director, Media and Publicity, All Progressives Congress Presidential Campaign Council, Bayo Onanuga claimed that Mr Tinubu, was not rushed off the stage due to health concerns at his rally in Minna, the Niger State capital.
According to Onanuga, the crowd that turned up to welcome Tinubu at the rally was so massive that the former governor of Lagos State had to address them briefly.
He disclosed this in a statement shared on the official website of the APC presidential candidate and his running mate, Senator Kashim Shettima.
The statement read, “A massive crowd of APC supporters welcomed the presidential candidate, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, to Minna on Wednesday, as he arrived for the mega rally.
“The cheering crowd was unprecedented, according to journalists at the Trade Fair Complex, venue of the rally.
“Tinubu, who held another successful rally in Kaduna on Tuesday, arrived in Minna in the evening of the same day for a series of meetings with APC leaders.
“The crowd was so huge that Tinubu spoke briefly to appreciate the supporters and identified the party candidates seeking elective positions
“Contrary to the rumours that he was rushed off stage because of health concerns, Tinubu cut it short to attend to other programmes of the day.
“He commended the party supporters for coming out en masse to witness the flag off of the presidential campaign.”
After the rally, Tinubu inaugurated his campaign office in the city, donated by Blueprint Newspaper Publisher and Chairman, Strategic Communications of the Asiwaju Bola Tinubu Presidential Campaign Council, Mohammed Malagi.
He also paid a visit to the Emir of Minna and was later hosted in a luncheon organised by the Governor of Niger, Abubakar Bello.