Buhari Reveals The Major Problem Of Nigeria
President-elect Muhammadu Buhari said yesterday that Nigeria’s major problem is neither ethnic nor religious but corruption which has remained endemic and entrenched.
Speaking when he received a delegation of All Progressives Congress (APC) leaders from Akwa Ibom State. in Abuja, Buhari, who asked Nigerian leaders to practice what they preach, said his government will rather kill corruption than allow it to kill Nigeria.
The delegation was led by the governorship candidate Obong Umana Okon Umana, who alleged massive inflation of results of elections in the state.
Buhari recalled that in 2007, it was his fellow Muslims and fellow Fulani, who Justices of the Supreme Court, upheld the election of the late President Umaru Yar’Adua, while those that said the election was flawed were not Fulani.He expressed confidence in the judicial system, saying: “I’m glad that you have gone to court too because you believe in the system as the right place to fight for your right and the right of the people you represent. I have gone to court three times and reached at the Supreme Court.
“Not because I believe the system has changed, but this time around, in your own case, you were still denied even with the use of PVCs and the card readers.
“That means they will never stop lying because the essence of the system itself is to protect the interests of the parties and the candidates whether it is the local government elections, house of assembly, governorship, house of representatives, senate etc.
“There is the need to go to the constituency, educate them, beg for their support and understanding, let them know the real essence according to law and to choose who they want to choose. Otherwise, we are wasting our time. I stand for that and that is why I chose to go to court, ending up at the Supreme Court.
“I didn’t go to court because I could afford it financially or physically, but people who believe in stabilising the system helped me along the line.
“Now the records are very clear, anybody who wants to study the political development of Nigeria cannot do that without getting the Supreme Court’s judgment of those years, 2003, 2007 and 2011.
“If you could recall in 2007, the Supreme Court was split into two. A six-man panel of justices was divided. Six justices led by Justice Oguntade, a Christian, a Yoruba man, Justice Aloma Mukthar and another Justice from Delta State said the election of 2007 was null and void because it was not conducted according to the law.
“But former Chief Justice Dahiru Musdapher, a Fulani from Jigawa and another Justice from Taraba, also a Fulani said the election was not flawless but all the same, the PDP won and then the Chief Justice, a Muslim and a Nupe Man cancelled the votes with them so it was four against three. The point I want to make here is that the problem of Nigeria is not ethnic or religious. It is corruption.
“This is what we are fighting and that is why corruption is number three in my campaign. The first one is security, the north east, the Delta area where people are kidnapped and ransom are being demanded which people cannot afford.
“The second one is unemployment, sixty per cent of Nigerians are youths, most of them, whether they went to school or not are unemployed and that is dangerous. So we have to get the issue of the economy right to make sure the jobs are made available and we should try to kill corruption before corruption kills Nigeria.
“Let us practice what we preach as well, because corruption is fast becoming a culture and to try to control people is not an easy task but it must be done.”
Umana said the hope of the people of the state for a free and fair election was frustrated by the state government, leading to loss of lives.
Umana said: “The desire of our people for change was a natural outpouring of their disappointment with and neglect by the PDP-controlled Federal Government for 16 years, during which there was no federal presence in the state. Even the much-talked about East-West Road could not be completed in those long years.
“During the campaigns, the people also complained of gross under-representation in federal appointments, even in the oil industry, where the state leads in crude oil and gas production.
“While mentioning some of the developmental challenges facing our state, we would like to request that the Ibaka Deep Seaport should be treated as a priority project and completed by your administration to help ease the problem of unemployment facing youths in the state and the country at large.
“The people had hoped that there would be free and fair elections in Akwa Ibom State for them to vote and bring in APC government at both the state and federal levels, so that the lot of the people of the state would change for the better.
“However, it is a matter for regret and a point of great frustration that our votes for you in Akwa Ibom State were not allowed to count during the presidential election because of massive vote fraud and wanton violence.
“We would like to report that the gubernatorial and house of assembly elections held in the state on 11 April 2015 witnessed even worse degrees of electoral fraud and violence, leading to many deaths and injuries.
“All the violence and electoral malpractices were perpetrated by a private army set up and funded by the state governor, Chief Godswill Akpabio.”