Buhari reassures crowd, vows to fight corruption
President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday took his reelection campaign to Sokoto State where he promised not to betray the confidence reposed in him by Nigerians.“ I will not allow anybody to steal. Any corrupt person will be prosecuted. The Federal Government is trying its best in all ramifications,” the president told supporters of the All Progressives Congress (APC) that attended his campaign rally at the Gingiya Stadium, Sokoto.
Buhari recalled that when he was in Sokoto in 2015 for the campaign for his first term in office, he promised to transform the economy, boost security and fight corruption headlong.According to him, modest achievements have been recorded in the three areas as the economy of the nation has now been put on a sound footing, while the anti-corruption fight is on top gear.
On security, Buhari said the people of Borno State confirmed that Boko Haram had been completely decimated, adding that no fewer than 17 local government areas that were under the control of the terrorists had been fully liberated.“On agriculture, the last two raining seasons had recorded bumper harvests, as such, food security is highly guaranteed in the county. We have also provided subsidised fertilizers.
“While hoping that similar bumper harvests would be recorded this year, I am appealing to Nigerians to go back to the farms to produce food for consumption and for sale.”
The president presented Senator Aliyu Magatakarda Wamakko; the state APC gubernatorial candidate, Alhaji Ahmed Aliyu Sokoto and his running mate, Alhaji Faruk Malami Yabo, to the public and appealed to the people to massively vote for them in the upcoming polls.
Also yesterday, the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, continued his campaign for votes, lamenting that the nation has lost its leadership of the West Africa sub-region. “It is with a very heavy heart that I received the news that the Republic of Ghana has overtaken our dear nation as West Africa’s largest recipient of foreign direct investment.
“For all the years that the PDP governed Nigeria, including the eight years of which I was vice president, Nigeria always set the pace for Africa in terms of foreign direct investment and became the number one recipient of FDI on the continent in 2013 under a PDP administration. In that year, we also became Africa’s largest economy, thanks to the PDP’s leadership.
“As a businessman and employer of labour, I am disappointed that a nation with 15 percent of our population has outperformed us in this area. This is an economic emergency that must be addressed,” Atiku lamented in a statement.
The former vice president said “this unfortunate economic indicator has escaped the attention of the current administration, who are more interested in hounding real and imagined opponents, like the Chief Justice of Nigeria and many legislators, than in addressing the rapid economic decline Nigeria is witnessing under their watch.“I foresaw this happening, which is why I was in the United States last week to get foreign investors who have been divesting from Nigeria, to return their investments. Prior to my U.S. trip, I had undertaken similar missions in Europe and the Orient.”
On why Nigeria has become an economic pariah under the present administration leading to its becoming the world headquarters for extreme poverty, Atiku said: “When you have a leader who habitually travels abroad to de-market his own nation and its economy, things like this are bound to happen.“It is further exacerbated when that same leader stubbornly blames his predecessors for problems he caused, while at the same time taking credit for achievements and progress initiated and delivered by those same leaders he makes a habit of denigrating.”
He promised that if elected president on February 16, 2019, he would “be Nigeria’s chief marketing officer, and will never speak ill of our economy, our polity and our youths. My utterances, both at home and abroad, will be used to lift Nigeria’s economy. We will regain our status as Africa’s top recipient of FDI.”
Meanwhile, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) said its attention had been drawn to a video purportedly showing a radio presenter with what was said to be a ‘card reader’ to be used in the forthcoming polls.In a statement in Abuja yesterday, the commission said it would investigate the video to ascertain whether what was shown was indeed an INEC smart card reader.
But according to the commission, mere possession does not in itself give the card reader or its operator access to its systems and processes. It said all card readers to be deployed in elections are to be specifically configured and must have certain unique attributes or credentials which must be known and recognised by its systems.Smart card readers not configured with certain attributes, according to INEC, will not be able to receive or transmit data or communicate with the PVCs or the commission’s servers.