Wednesday, 25 March 2015

''Why Buhari Shed Tears for Nigeria'' - Muse

Former National Vice-Chairman of the former Congress for Progressive Change, Alhaji Razaq Muse in a new interview with Eniola Akinkuotu, talked about the coming Saturday elections and why Buhari, who was the CPC’s presidential candidate in the 2011 election, wept openly after his loss. See more of the interview below after the cut...

PDP says Buhari will Islamise Nigeria.

This is not possible because even during his time as the military Head of State, the Supreme Military Council was made up of Christians and Muslims. Now we are in a democratic system and have both federal and state legislative bodies. And you know, for you to Islamise Nigeria, they must get two thirds of the National Assembly and state houses of assembly to agree to it so how can he Islamise Nigeria? It is all cock and bull story.

Buhari, I can tell you without swallowing any of my words, i vowed in 2011 that he would not contest again. I was there beside him when he shed tears. He did that because he felt that despite his desire to bring about change in this country, people could not see it. At that time, he was trying to have an alliance with the then Action Congress of Nigeria but that alliance collapsed three days before the elections. But today, it was the people that called him saying, “General, you are still alive and healthy, come on board.”

It is only him that does not have any skeleton in his cupboard. He is ready to lead by example and can deliver votes. I was the National Vice Chairman of the CPC and he was able to deliver over 12 million votes despite the late registration of the party. So, someone like that, who is still relevant in the North, will deliver more votes. So, I don’t see how he will lose, especially with the collaboration of the South-West. I don’t see how Jonathan can win without rigging the elections.

Since your party merged with other parties to form the All Progressives Congress, how have things been?

I was involved in the merger and I had to make some sacrifices. The Peoples Democratic Party thought it would not work but because there is a need for change and God was in charge, to their disappointment, everything went smoothly. Even when they thought the APC presidential primary would degenerate into crisis, they were proved wrong again and Maj. Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) won.

President Goodluck Jonathan has been visiting Lagos in recent times. Don’t you think all the endorsements he has been getting can give him the upper hand?

You see, ironically, I think the PDP and the presidency are worsening their own chances and increasing the people’s resolve for change. No matter the amount of lobbying and money being given, people have made up their minds that they want a change.

The PDP-led Federal Government has failed. Look at power for instance; they keep shifting the targets. They will tell you that by December, we shall have 10,000 megawatts of electricity and then by December, they will shift the target again. Now, they are saying in another two years, we will have constant power supply. Look at the oil sector; is it not an absurdity that up till now, we cannot boast of refining crude oil let alone exporting it? It is a shame. We need a good leader that will lead by example, a leader that can face corruption. Once that is done, there will be more jobs and a lower level of insecurity.

Another thing you should know about the South-West is that we vote based on performance. The likes of Femi Fani-Kayode and Governor Ayodele Fayose are just distractions. I feel most of them are scared. Fayose, even as a governor, still has a case with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission but because he is a governor, he has immunity. Such a person can never want Buhari to become President because Buhari is the kind of person that can push for the removal of immunity and of course, you know what that means.

Fani-Kayode was still in court just about two weeks ago. So, Jonathan’s visits to the South-West are of no consequence. Who are the people that will vote for Jonathan? Is it the barber that has to buy fuel into his generator to work that will vote continuation for another four years of hopelessness?

In Lagos State, which has the highest number of registered voters, the PDP seems united for the first time. Don’t you think the APC can lose its grip on the state?

The PDP is only united when it is time to share money. It is not only in Lagos. Most of the PDP people in Lagos know that they cannot deliver for Jonathan but are only trying to deceive him. Our governorship candidate, Akinwunmi Ambode, is a tested member of the party and he is an all-rounder.

He graduated at the age of 21 and then became a chartered accountant at the age of 24. He has a Master’s degree and served Lagos in various capacities for 27 years. Some say he had a problem with Governor Babatunde Fashola but this is not true because he has a letter of commendation from Fashola. He helped Lagos to survive when former President Olusegun Obasanjo seized Lagos funds. If not for him and his experience in accounting and his ability to devise ways to increase the state’s income and make Lagos virtually self-sufficient, Lagos would have been crippled. Under him Lagos will excel and he will be able to consolidate the achievements of Fashola.

But there is still this controversy over the use of card readers.

By the Federal Government’s procurement of card readers, the nation has spent so much money to block one of the areas of rigging elections which is the accreditation stage where ghost voters come and then ballot boxes are stuffed. So, for the PDP to oppose it means there is an ulterior motive. I think the Independent National Electoral Commission is on track and it will produce the desired result.

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