Some elders from the northern part of the country, yesterday, took President Muhammadu Buhari to the cleaners over his declaration to seek a second term in office. They were unanimous that Buhari has performed woefully and, as such, his support base across the country has been decimated.
According to the National Chairman of the Northern Elders’ Council, (NEC) Alhaji Tanko Yakassai, the declaration is no news, adding that, “I wonder the type of magic that will make Buhari to win re-election in 2019”.
He said: “At the height of his popularity, the difference between him and Goodluck Jonathan was 2.5 million votes”, saying he is not likely to win. Also reacting to the declaration, Second Republic lawmaker, Junaid Muhammed, said Buhari was not trustworthy because “I remember during the campaign, he promised to do only one tenure”.
He also alleged that Buhari and his supporters were planning to rig the election and plunge the country into turmoil. According to him: “This announcement is very unfortunate.
It is done in very bad fate and I think it will not do the country or the people any good because I believe politicians, being what they are and he is nothing now more than a politician, should be assessed by what they say. “That is the only logical way to asses them, by what they say and what they do.
“He (Buhari) said severally during the campaign that he was not going to contest for a second term. He also said he was going to do a number of things. He has failed woefully in all of the things he said he was going to do. “He put up a cabinet that was a national and international scandal; he brought his relations, friends and cronies to the cabinet, none of whom is performing or has performed during the last three years. “On the whole, he is the least competent, the least prepared person for the office of the president of this country.
But he decided, in spite of his non-performance, to go in and contest. “It is now clear to me and I believe to every right thinking Nigerians that his politics is all about himself, his nepotism, his cronyism of friends and relations. “It is not about national interest, because what he did in the last three years had nothing to do with national interest.
So, I don’t believe that another four years of Buhari post 2019 will do him or the country any good. We are likely to have more of the same and I can’t see him performing. “It is left for Nigerians to speak their mind and when the time comes, to speak with their vote. “I believe he is not going to be relying on the votes of Nigerians.
I think the intention is to rig the election and throw the country into turmoil much more than the current turmoil of a failed Boko Haram fight, failed fight against corruption, against militants in the Niger Delta and a government that lacks any moral authority. He believes only in feathering the nest of his cronies and relations”.
On his part, Yakassai said, “The declaration is not a surprise to me. I have told you before now that if he said he is not going to contest, I will be surprised. So I know he will do it. “All we are waiting for is to see those that are going to contest against him. Then, we can now measure them.
But certainly the amount of support he enjoyed before is no longer there. “What I am wondering is that his party people and his supporters are saying he is going to win and am wondering which magic they’re going to perform to make him win. I wonder why they are so sure that he is going to win. “Definitely, his support base is not like it is before.
We don’t know what they are preparing for, but don’t forget that the margin between him and former President Jonathan in 2015 was about 2.5million votes and that was at the height of his popularity. He is not as popular as he used to be. He is not likely to win. His popularity is down now all over the country”.
Also speaking, a former Governor of Kaduna State, Alhaji Balarabe Musa, welcomed Buhari’s declaration, but said that his party, the Peoples Redemption Party (PRP), would come up with a strong candidate to challenge Buhari in the elections.
“President Muhammadu Buhari is welcome on board, but we want to assure Nigerians that the PRP has a presidential candidate to field in the 2019 general elections,” he said. Similarly, Alhaji Ahmed Makarfi, former National Caretaker Committee Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), said in a text message that: “It’s no news that he is contesting, it would have been news if he had announced the opposite.”
The Sokoto state Secretary of the PDP, Alhaji Kabiru Aliyu, said Nigerians should vote out the APC or prepare for “another four years of hunger.”
“Buhari’s age and health condition are all in Allah’s hand, but what is more of concern is good governance and ability to transform the country better. “Nigerians should vote PDP to avoid continuous hunger and maladministration that subject people to hardships,” Aliyu said.