Junaid Mohammed, Second Republic lawmaker, has asserted that the desperation of former Vice President Atiku Abubakar to replace President Muhammadu Buhari in 2019 will lead Nigeria into a “violent confusion if care is not taken.”
The second Republic lawmaker made the claim while noting that the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, is also desperate to return to power in 2019, a situation that may throw the country into chaos.
Speaking with The Nation, Muhammed also stressed that Buhari must not submit himself for re-election because he has no “solid reasons to persuade” Nigerians to vote for him in the next election.
He said, “I believe democracy is a very rational institution. I believe no leader should present himself for election or re-election, unless he has solid reasons to persuade those who are voting that, he is equal to the task, that his leadership will be good for the country, that he can be trusted and who can. So, with these criteria, I am not persuaded that Buhari is qualified to submit himself for re-election, come 2019. I do not, however, rule out the possibility that he may do something spectacular, something good for the country, like he promised at some forum.
“Now, if there is no improvement, even though I am not foreclosing the possibility of this improvement, but so far, I must say that, I have seen nothing Buhari did since 2015, and I don’t see what miracle he has to offer in 2018 and January to March of 2019 that election will be held.
“As far as I am concerned, rational people will want to leave their decision till the last moment, to give some fairness to him, to his party and those he represents. But, unfortunately, when you look at the people he represents and those he has been trying to protect, because he virtually represents nobody, because the cabals around him are not a representation of the people of Nigeria.
“The ministers, like (Babatunde) Fashola and others who are busy pretending to be serving his interest are actually undermining him by making sure that, most of the strategic investments are done in the areas where they come from, for their own mischievous agenda, not for the people who actually voted for him. They are alienating the people who voted for him.
“There is nothing rational, in fact, everything that has been happening since 2015 till date, there is nothing that a rational person will say, these are the reasons I want to vote for this man. Now, there are these other people who are going about, and that seems to be the sinister campaign that has been going round by the cabals, members of his family and those who are close to him, that, they are now using dangerous traditional, tribal and religious sentiments. They are saying now that, because he is a northerner, he must be voted by northerners. I am a northerner, I am a Muslim and I will not vote for him, and there are several northerners who will not vote for him.
“It seems however that, since he came to power, they have collected billions or trillions of money, with which they want to either rig election, or unleash violence on the election or start arresting people unjustly, which was the kind of thing he did when he was in power from 1984 to August 1985. But, if he does that, the country is going to be in hell of confusion.
“And I don’t think he has the capacity to withstand that confusion in case he decides to go in for the confusion. Because, he seems to be determined and desperate about being the President. Unfortunately also for the country, people who will want to succeed him either within the APC, the PDP or within the so- called northern establishment or Northern notables are also equally desperate.
“So, APC is desperate, PDP is desperate and also people who are hanging in between like Atiku (Abubakar) and others are also desperate. So, you can see, we have a classical set up that will lead this country into a violent confusion if care is not taken. And I am concerned about that.
“Whoever governs this country is entirely not just his own business, but the business of the whole of Nigeria. And we have been very badly treated, very shabbily treated as a people. Even the APC as a party has been badly treated by Buhari, the cabals, his relations and his friends.”