Politics

Sule Lamido: Nigeria may never progress until APC, PDP look beyond power grab

A former governor of Jigawa State, Sule Lamido, has blamed the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the problems bedevilling the country.

The former governor, in an interview with Channels Television on Sunday night, said the country’s growing problems are borne out of the lust for political and sectional gains rather than national interests as exhibited by leaders of the two dominant parties.

Drawing from the comment of an APC chieftain, Farouk Aliyu, which described the ruling party’s campaign promises to Nigerians as regrettable ignorance in one of the programme’s episodes last week, Mr Lamido, a PDP chieftain, said he had predicted the performance outcome of the current administration.

Without sparing his party, the ex-governor argued that the main opposition party may turn out worse if sectionalism, regional loyalty and a host of other things remain dominant rather than zeal for a progressive nation.

“Governors of parties, governors from the South coming together saying they want progress. If you look at Nigeria from their point of view, they seek their own interests, your own people, your own people, conversely other people have their interests. Political parties should not discriminate, it should be for all Nigerians, not their personal interests,” Mr Lamido said.

“We focus too much on political power, we put too much influence on political power and in so doing abandon the real problems facing Nigeria. That is what APC did in 2014. They said so many things about Nigeria, they have gotten there now, where are we? We are worse off.

“If PDP is not very careful, if we begin to explore all these divisions in terms of my own time, my own region and so on, by the time we get there if we don’t get the process right through a very credible, open, inclusive, vibrant, we will be worse than APC.”

Mr Lamido told the host this while discussing the solution to insecurity challenges in the country

Although the PDP is yet to officially zone the presidency, the ex-governor’s position suggests his support for the party to throw it open for members to contest without geopolitical bias.

Mr Lamido said he had postulated “defeat for the nation” given the candidates presented to Nigerians by both the APC and PDP for the 2019 presidential election.

“In 2014, on the podium publicly, I said the two vocal parties running for the presidency, none of them is even a Nigerian at heart, they were propelled by interest. You (Atiku) and Buhari are simply running for their own interest, not for Nigerians but you are telling them to follow you.

“The division was so large that I said whoever won, Nigeria would lose. I said whoever won that election, Nigeria will lose. It has happened. APC won, Nigerians lost because we have lost that thing which is binding and common to us,” he said.

The governor, who also served as Minister of Foreign Affairs under President Olusegun Obasanjo, was once arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on a 43-count amended charge bordering on abuse of office and alleged N1.35 billion fraud alongside his sons.

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