In a recent interview Atiku Abubakar, former vice president of Nigeria, has bared his mind on main national issues, including calls for probe of the government he served, his participation in the APC presidential primaries, his political struggles and the PDP challenge.
1. Those who played a great role to bring about the change
“The Yar’Adua political group is almost in every political party in this country; even Asiwaju Bola Tinubu was part of the Yar’Adua political group. So, whichever way you look at it, coming from the PDP, I was part of the Yar’Adua political group. Asiwaju from AD, AC and then ACN, I mean we scattered kind of but it is not surprising that we are all regrouping into one big political family.”
2. PDP as opposition party
“I will like to see a very viable opposition, so that Nigerians can have a choice. If you don’t like the performance of APC, you vote PDP and vice versa.”
3. March 28 presidential election and the wind of change
“It’s a question of choice. You don’t expect Buhari to win in the South-South because President Jonathan comes from there. And by reason of neighborliness, the South East is also close to the South South. So, I don’t think there is anything wrong with that. Why do you think they were wrong? Don’t they have a right to their political positions? Why should we all move towards the same direction? Then, it will not be healthy for this country or our democracy.”
4. The 2015 election results and tension in the land
“I expected the results to come out the way they came. Yes, I agree that before the elections, there was a lot of tension, there were concerns because before the election, the campaigns were very unhealthy, there was too much uncertainty in the air and that led to a lot of apprehension, fear and anxiety but that did not change my expectation about the results that came out. I knew APC was going to swing the elections.”
5. “Tales of empty treasuries”
“If you look at our current position, especially, the price of crude, we were worse off in 1999 than today. In 1999 when we came in, the price of crude was just about 20 dollars. So, all that is required of President Buhari is prudent management of our resources.
“Of course, I will caution Nigerians that they should not expect miracles overnight but for sure, the government will try to make sure that the resources are very well managed and that the dividends of democracy trickle down to the lowest person.
“We have pledged to fight corruption which is one of the most fundamental problems we have. It breeds waste of resources and anti-development. I believe that in a few months’ time, people will begin to see the difference. People are already adjusting themselves because they know what is going to come.”
6. Fear of probe
“Even the government I served probed me. So, the issue of me being scared of being probed is not there.”
7. President Buhari is the Abraham Lincoln of our time
“I don’t understand the similarities they are trying to draw because Abraham Lincoln contested about 12 times and Buhari contested for three times and won on the fourth. Is it the age?
He may have persevered, but he is still short of Abraham Lincoln. However, I commend his perseverance and courage to continue.”
8. Relationship and personal knowledge of the president
“I have known him for a very long time now. When he was head of state during the military administration, I was still in the Federal Civil Service and I implemented some of his policies at that time as a civil servant. Since then, I have known him as an astute leader and a tough one for that matter and I think we should brace up for that kind of tough leadership.”
9. Away from politics
“I go on vacations a lot; I love travelling, reading and swimming. I enjoy football quite a lot. I have been a fan of Arsenal Football Club for more than 20 years now.”
10. High and low points in your career
“The high point of my career was when I was the Vice President; I was in charge of the economy. I enjoyed how I liberalised and opened up the economy to the private sector. My lowest point was when I saw the PDP disintegrating. I was really sorry for myself.
It’s because when we formed the PDP, we formed it with good intentions to transform this country but overtime, most of the founding fathers were relegated to the background, some moved out of the party and instead of them to allow orderly generational shift of leadership from one generation to the other as it happens in matured democracies, they couldn’t wait.”
The post 10 Not-To-Be-Missed Quotes From Atiku Abubakar’s Interview appeared first on NEWS.NAIJ.COM – Nigerian & worldwide news..
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