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Buhari: Why I declared my second term bid early

Dyepkazah Shibayan

President Muhammadu Buhari says he announced his second term bid in April to “save a lot of time and cool tempers”.

The president announced his intention to seek reelection at a meeting of the national executive committee (NEC) of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

Speaking when he received the Buhari Support Group Centre (BSGC) at the presidential villa on Friday, Buhari explained that some people are in a “habit of being a nuisance to themselves and to many Nigerians” and his announcement was a challenge to those “who are serious.”

The president said Nigerians need to be involved in the election process.

“I had to announce before the national executive committee (NEC) about my intention to ask for the party’s nomination for next year’s election so that we can save a lot of time and cool tempers,” he said.

“A lot of people are trying to make it a habit of being a nuisance to themselves and to many Nigerians. So when I announced my intention, I said okay let those who are serious come out and I try to make sure that the party is reorganise and consolidated so that we start from bottom to top.

“So that Nigerians will be involved and that each constituency will pick those they want to represent them at various levels. Whether local government chairmen, councillors, state house of assemblies, house of representatives, senate and finally the presidency itself.

“With this participation, some of the people who are educated and sophisticated, they say for those who have got the money, bring the money but we will still do what we want to do.

“Having tried three times and ended up in the supreme court and I am lucky to be here the fourth time, I am very much aware of what is going on from constituency to constituency. I am very pleased, we thank God and we thank technology because what use to happen that caused my ending up in supreme court, they will just seat down, look at the constituency and award numbers and they will say anybody who disagrees should go to court.”

Buhari appealed to Nigerians to get their permanent voter cards.

“Now, when somebody is looking for the next meal where will he get money to pay SANs (senior advocate of Nigeria). But thank God technology has come in. With PVCs (permanent voters card), with card reader, wherever you register it will show whether you voted or not,” he said.

“That is why voters education is very important. Tell people that the PVC is their nationality and they are entitled to it. They can use across party, religion, ethnicity and so let them take pride in their PVC, let them keep it and use it. So, this is an additional assignment for your group.

“I have been talking to the governors urging them to carry out voters education, it may not favour them but people will eventually understand whether they tell the truth or not, people will do what they feel right.”

On his part, Umaru Dembo, chairman of the BSGC, said the group is prepared to work for a “safe and prosperous Nigeria”.


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