Femi Fani-Kayode, director media and publicity of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential campaign organisation, wants Nigerians and members of the international community to interrogate the relationship between the Movement for the Emancipation of Niger Delta (MEND), Boko Haram and Muhammadu Buhari, the All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential candidate.
According to Fani-Kayode, Buhari’s comments on insurgency in Nigeria were worrisome and his endorsement by MEND should give Nigerians and the international community great concern. He said it would not come as a surprise if Boko Haram equally endorsed Buhari and the APC.
“It is important for Nigerians to take another look at Buhari’s comments about Boko Haram and the way he has encouraged Boko Haram group,” he said.
“It is on the public record that Buhari had announced to the whole world that it was unfair and unjust for the Boko Haram to be tackled after killing over 20,000 innocent Nigerians, mostly women and children, and burning their homes and destroying their communities.
“It is also on the record that Buhari has severally and consistently criticised government for protecting Nigerians against the attacks of Boko Haram and has gleefully announced that government forces should stop attacking Boko Haram, and in fact, should treat them like the Niger Delta militants; in other words, rehabilitate them, grant them amnesty and pay them every month, concluding that any attack on the Boko Haram sect was a declaration of war on the people of northern Nigeria.”
Fani-Kayode stated that his “friend” and APC spokesman, Lai Mohammed, had supported Buhari by stating that the proscription of Boko Haram by federal government after they had murdered 20,000 Nigerians in cold blood was unjust and unconstitutional.
“I think it is relevant and something of interest for all Nigerians and the members of the international community to begin to ask questions about the nexus between Boko Haram, MEND and all these terrorist organisations that find it easy to kill people and the leading opposition presidential candidate and the APC,” he said.
“This is the question Nigerians should seek answers to because insecurity is one of the fundamental issues of the campaign for the office of president and Nigerians must be wary of any person seeking to be president and has such public sympathy for terrorist organisations in spite of the obvious damages that they inflicted on the country.”
He added that President Goodluck Jonathan’s disclosure that some Nigerians hired MEND leader, Henry Okah, to kill him on October 1, 2010 was not late in coming.
“I think it is better late than never; perhaps if it has been exposed at that time, the implications would have been not so good because it would have created more tension in the land,” he said.
“The most important thing is that this is a government and a president that is quite open that tells Nigerians what they ought to know at the right time. There is no question about the fact on October 1 on that particular year, there was a bomb; the president was meant to actually appear at that venue, but luckily for him and luckily for us, he did not turn up there and this bomb went off and people were killed.
“It is self-evident even from those facts alone that it was an attempt on the president; people could have put two and two together at that time and got four. It wasn’t really for the president to say so but now, it is relevant simply because this same organisation that wanted to kill your president, our president, the president of the leading nation of the African continent and the president of the nation that is seen by many as the hope of the black man on the planet, four years later that same organisation is endorsing Buhari, a man that wants to take his seat. You put two and two together, it becomes four; it doesn’t become five and I will let you work out what is going on.”
Reacting to a statement by his counterpart in the APC presidential campaign organisation, Garba Shehu, that he was attacking Buhari rather than focusing on issues, Fani-Kayode said it was not in Shehu’s place to teach him how to do his job.
“I believe Buhari himself is an issue. He is just one of the many issues because you have a man that has told the world his intentions for Nigeria, whether it will be that he wants to spread Sharia throughout the country, whether it would be he wants to tamper with the secularity of the state, whether it would be that he believes that Muslims should only vote for Muslims, whether it would be that he believes that an attack on Boko Haram is an attack on the North,” he added.