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Why Tinubu Is The Best Man To Succeed Buhari –Salami

Hon Biodun Salami, Assistant Publicity Secretary Of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in an interview with JOY ANIGBOGU, spoke bout performance of Adas Oshiomhole as national chairman of the party, victory of the party in Bayelsa State, the reason why Asiwaju Ahmed Tinubu should be next president, among other issues. Excerpts:
Some Nigerians, especially from APC fold have been clamouring for support for Asiwaju Ahmed Tinubu, national leader of APC, as president of Nigeria, come 2023 but recently, Satguru Maharaji has also joined the call for support. Can you talk about it?
Every well-meaning Nigerian should know that Satguru Maharaji an acclaimed man of God must have his reasons for saying that. An average Nigerian or Lagosian would want that prophecy to come to pass. He is a man of many parts, from the philanthropy aspect of it; you can say that he is the right person. He does not sympathise but he empathizes, he feels what you feel. If you go through Asiwaju’s life history you would know that he is not somebody that was born with silver spoon. He rose to where he is today. He is a well-traveled man. Having been in the private as well as public sector and rose to highest positions, he can marry his private experience with his public experience at any particular point in time. He is the kind of person that I would want to call a poly-technocrat. We need somebody who has the rudiments, a person who would understand what people need. He is the only person in this country who has made people irrespective of tribe or religion. If a man of God comes up with such prophecy, we should all pray that the prophecy comes to fruition. If there is anybody supporting Asiwaju, forget about my position as a chieftain of APC, I would have still supported him, even in another political party. I believe that he is the man that would take Nigerians to the Promised Land. He is a man with a very large heart, ready to forgive. He is not someone that is a religious fanatic, though you can call him a Muslim, some members of his household are Christians. He is the one that should come in after Buhari, someone who can build on the foundation laid by Buhari.
Do you think Adams Oshiomhole, national chairman of your party can continue in that capacity, with all the call for his resignation from different angles, especially the one coming from Progressives Governors Forum?
Someone who claimed to be Director General of Progressives Governors Forum said that, and so many governors have disassociated themselves from that statement, and the person in question has been asked to resign. There was a statement that said, the man was not speaking their minds. Oshiomhole has brought great discipline to the party. There is a difference between him and his predecessor, John Odigie Oyegun, His predecessor did his best, but I must say that sanity and discipline is the watchword in Oshiomhole’s administration. In a political setting, it is conglomerate of divergent opinions and views. In any way you want to bring in discipline, of course you have to step on toes, that is why someone like me would always support Oshiomhole, even though the former governor may have his shortcomings. When it comes to party politics, Oshiomhole is the best chairman for the moment. Unprecedentedly, few days ago, the party was able to get the governorship of Bayelsa. We have never had inroad into South-South, a place where you have the immediate past president. Oshiomhole was there to determine that David Lyon was the right candidate; a man that had the pedigree, who, the whole Bayelsans agreed to support. If Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) did not have the foresight to discover the man and APC was able to do so, you could see the overwhelming support. It took a man of wisdom like Oshiomhole to have discovered that Lyon was the best candidate needed to win the election. Oshiohmole was the man who broke the jinx in the South-South, for us to have won in Edo State, as governorship candidate of our party then as Action Alliance (AC) and later as Action Alliance of Nigeria (ACN).
There has been accusation from some of your party chieftains especially those who contested in the last governorship primaries in Bayelsa and Kogi States that Oshiomhole had been responsible for some problems associated with the primary elections, where there were lots of litigation like the one in Bayelsa State, where Senator Heineken Lokpobiri claimed he was the candidate for that election. What is your view?
In any contest people must complain. If Lokpobiri said he won the primary, I hope you would not lose sight of the fact that the verdict of the court was not what Lokpobiri asked for. Lokpobiri had come out to say that there was primary, and he won the primary and would never canvas that there was no primary. With due respect to that Judge, maybe he got his judgment wrongly. We have conflict resolution mechanism in our party, that was why Lokpobiri quickly came out to counter the Judgment of the court. I don’t see any accusation against Oshiomhole irrespective of Bayelsa election. People wanted Lyon, and you saw the jubilation after the election. You know that Bayelsa has always been a volatile State when it comes to elections, but the reverse was the case. The jubilation showed he was a popular candidate. I am not saying that Lokpobiri was not good, maybe he wouldn’t have won the election for us.
People are insinuating that APC couldn’t have won Bayelsa State without input from PDP, they alleged that former President Goodluck Jonathan assisted your party to win. Do you have a contrary view?
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When there is common interest irrespective of party affiliation, there would be alignment. Former President Jonathan as far as Nigeria is concerned is a statesman, a man who has done what nobody had done in the history of Nigeria or even Africa. A sitting President would be defeated and he would concede defeat. If the statesman had seen quality in somebody and you decided to bring in your brother, issue of politics has gone beyond brotherly relationship. Bayelsans are highly educated; they saw quality in Lyon and not in Diri. Jonathan must have known that Diri was not marketable and asked for Alaibe and when you refused, it became your problem. We brought in the best candidate and won. Let them not castigate the man, people decided not Jonathan.
Your party has been accused of being very brutal especially in the last governorship elections in Kogi and Bayelsa States, where your party was accused of using thugs to kill a PDP women leader in Kogi State. What is your view?
No sane person would want violence in an election. Democracy is supposed to be a kind of carnival. There is nobody within our party that would support somebody to go to the extent of killing, especially killing a woman. It is for that reason that the governor in his wisdom told the police to do their work. The police said it was a reprisal attack and we don’t agree with that. Whoever that might have done that, the law should take its course. Thuggery is not part of us. We have maintained peace in Lagos State and that is why Lagosians have always been voting for us. Politics is about the people, when you convince them, they would vote for you.

Credit: IndependentNg

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