I Don’t Give A Damn What Obasanjo Says About Me — Atiku
Former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar, in this interview with NIYI ODEBODE, JOHN ALECHENU and ADE ADESOMOJU, speaks on the expectations of Nigerians from the incoming administration of Maj. Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), his perception of former President Olusegun Obasanjo, among other issues
The President-elect, Maj. Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), has acknowledged the fact that expectations of Nigerians from him are very high. How do you think he can meet these within the next four years?
Whenever there is a change in government in a democracy, whether in Nigeria or anywhere else, normally the expectation tends to rise. It is not unexpected in Nigeria, particularly when this is the first time in our democratic process that we are witnessing a smooth change in government from the ruling party to an opposition. Therefore, expectations are much higher within the normal circumstance of change.
After several shots at the presidency, will you still present yourself if the opportunity avails itself to you again?
It is quite too early for such a question. We are in a transition process. We have not even formed the next government. You are asking me whether I will like to run again or not. I think it is just too early. My concern is to make sure that the transition process is smooth and complete and a new government is formed because it is the party that I belong to that is coming in. My dream for Nigeria is always that we can, from time to time, change government so that there can be competition among parties and that competition will bring about, perhaps more development and progress in the country. I think that is my most important concern now rather than thinking of whether I’m going to run again or not.
Why is it taking your party so long to decide on zoning?
I think that is one fundamental thing Nigerians tend to forget. There is no zoning in the constitution of the All Progressives Congress. In the true sense of it, there is no zoning. But we also know that this country is between North and South, Muslims and Christians. It is a multi-ethnic, multi-religious country; hence there is the need for balance of government appointments. We are not unaware of that. In the strictest sense of it, there is no zoning in the APC’s constitution. It is in the Peoples Democratic Party’s constitution and it has a long history. Those of us who were in the Constitutional Conference of 1994, 1995 actually initiated it.
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