Sam Nda Isaiah Joins Race For APC Presidential Ticket, Says Will Contest Against Buhari
Nda-Isaiah told Thisday management team during a courtesy visit to the Lagos headquarters of the newspaper company yesterday that he was ready to contest the party primaries against his political mentor and one of the founding fathers of the party, Maj. Gen. Muhammadu Buhari, if he again decides to take another shot at the presidency.
Nda-Isaiah, who visited Thisday Newspapers with his campaign team to intimate the management of his presidential ambition, said though he was yet to begin a full-blown campaign in compliance with the guidelines of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), his visit was to consult and talk with the people.
However, while emphasising that his resolve to vie for the presidency in 2015 had been a long time ambition, he said he did not intend to drop the ambition since he had discussed it with Buhari.
“I told him (Buhari) tactically that I am in the race. And he said it was politically correct. I went round all those close to him. I have gone far into the race. So, if he decides to contest, I’m going to contest. I will contest against him. I will try everything to make sure that the relationship remains the same. But I wish it would not happen”, he added.
According to him, his presidential ambition is to arrest the regressive spate of development Nigeria is experiencing in spite of its ability to join the league of developed countries and his desire to make a difference.
He said: “It is now we should start doing very big things. We should have the biggest airports and the biggest seaports. Look at the things we achieved when there was no oil. Go to the universities now and compare what they did 20 years ago. We need new direction. I don’t believe that there is a magic to it. I believe it is possible to make the difference.”
He lamented the level of division among Nigerians, saying if he wins in the presidential election, one of his first assignments will be to ensure the unity of Nigeria, which he identifies as the panacea for rapid development.
“The most important thing is to bring people together. We are too divided over small issues. If any leader is sincere, it is the very thing to do. I will not say we are going to fight corruption because that is part of governance,” he said.
On the possibility of his being perceived as an antagonist of the President Goodluck Jonathan administration with his critical articles because of his presidential ambition, Nda-Isaiah said he had been critical of previous administrations.
He added that such an insinuation did not bother him as he had been committed to speaking the truth.
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