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Osinbajo defines ‘consultation’ as Saraki denounces part-time presidency

By Saxone Akhaine (Kaduna), Charles Coffie Gyamfi (Abeokuta), Rauf Oyewole (Bauchi) and Msugh Ityokura (Abuja)
10 May 2022   |   4:07 am
Consultation with people is critical in governance and important for national development, especially in a country as diverse and complex as Nigeria.

Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila; Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and Deputy Speaker of the House of Representative, Ahmed Idris Wase during the 2022 Conference of Speakers and Heads of African Parliaments (CoSAP) at Transcorp Hilton in Abuja…yesterday. PHOTO: PHILIP OJISUA

• Atiku thanks S’West PDP over hitch-free consultative visit
• Peter Obi tells delegates how to protect future of Nigerian children
• Democracy under threat, Gbajabiamila warns

Consultation with people is critical in governance and important for national development, especially in a country as diverse and complex as Nigeria.

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo made the submission at his official residence, Sunday evening, during a dinner with Speakers and Deputy Speakers of a number of State Houses of Assembly.

Stressing: “Government by partnership is so important,” he said: “That is the kind of relationship that I think makes governance easier. The only way to make a complex country like this work is by consultations. There is no other way.”

The Vice President also stated that he would apply this partnership model in governance, if All Progressives Congress (APC) nominates him as its presidential flag bearer, and he is elected President. He also restated the value of his experience to lead Nigeria as President in 2023

“In terms of training on the job, I think I am quite well trained. So, I believe very strongly that, although there are other contestants who are also very capable and competent, I believe that just in terms of readiness, I think that if there is anyone who is prepared for that, I am certainly that person.”

FORMER Senate President and a presidential aspirant on the People Democratic Party (PDP) platform, Bukola Saraki, yesterday, declared that Nigeria does not need a part-time president but a leader who would always be available to attend to the country’s needs.

Saraki stated this while addressing PDP delegates in Ogun State, following a closed-door meeting with former President Olusegun Obasanjo at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library (OOPL).

Saraki insisted he remained the only aspirant with the energy and capacity to bear the workload and demands of the office of a president.

The two-term former governor of Kwara State was accompanied by a former National Chairman of PDP, Abubakar Kawu Baraje.
“We need a president that will stand, that is bold and courageous. We all know that for four years as Senate President, I stood for this country; I stood for what I believed was in the interest of this country.

“Let us find that person who has the energy because the work of a president is not part-time, especially now that the country is very bad. Nigeria needs a president that is up and running, not a president that will be giving instructions, because when you give instructions and you don’t check, nothing will happen.

“You need somebody that has the energy to do it. I believe that I have that energy and capacity.”

FORMER Vice President Namadi Sambo said Saraki has the capacity and experience needed to lead Nigeria. Speaking on Sunday, during the Saraki’s visit to meet with Kaduna State leaders and delegates, ahead of the PDP primaries, Sambo said he and Saraki served as governors at the same time. And since then, he has known that Saraki cared about Kaduna State and the North West.

“I remember, when I was governor, he gave special attention to Kaduna. As Chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum, sometimes, I felt like his ‘self-appointed deputy’, even though the Forum has no deputy. This is because we had a close working relationship and a great personal relationship.”

“I want you all to know that Saraki is a team player. He is a man who plays with and for the team. I have always known him to be a very honest person who has capacity.”

FORMER Vice President of Nigeria and contender for the presidential ticket of the PDP, Atiku Abubakar, has expressed gratitude to leaders and members of the party in the South West for turning out in good numbers during his consultative tours with delegates from the zone.

The former Vice President, in a statement by his Media Adviser, Paul Ibe, yesterday, said the rousing welcome the presidential hopeful enjoyed during his three-day tour further reinforces his conviction that Nigerians are prepared for a leader who can unite the country.

Ibe quoted Atiku as saying: “Through my interactions with leaders and members of our party in the South West, I am more abreast with issues that are of utmost concern to the people of that region and they are issues that are well captured in my five-point policy agenda, tagged, ‘Unity SEEDs’, that comprise uniting the country, security, economic and educational reforms, as well as granting more responsibilities to states and local councils to drive rapid national development.”

ONE of the PDP presidential aspirants, Peter Obi, urged delegates of the party to vote for an aspirant that would save the future of children, stressing that the country was facing difficulties and requires a president like him.

The former governor of Anambra State said this in Bauchi State, while meeting with PDP delegates. He said he was in Bauchi “to plead with you, so that, as you go to the convention, remember that you can’t be in this position forever. Today, you are a delegate, tomorrow, you may not be. Even if you are made a permanent delegate, you won’t be here forever because a time will come that you’ll have to go back to your maker.

“When you go to vote at the convention, please, look at the future of your children and ask yourself, ‘which kind of society do I want these children to live in?’ Even if they give you money or buy you lunch, collect it but when you go to vote, look at the future of your children. We need to do things properly.”

MEANWHILE, Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, yesterday, raised the alarm that democracy is under threat in Africa.

Speaking at the opening ceremony of the Conference of Speakers and Heads of African Parliaments in Abuja, Gbajabiamila regretted: “From Sudan to Mali, Guinea and Chad, elected governments have been usurped by military juntas, overturning years of progress and the hopes of millions.”

He added: “Even in the places where elected governments are still in charge, public faith in the governing institutions is at an all-time low. When citizens lose confidence that a democratic government can meet their expectations, democracy loses credibility and support and begins a death spiral.”

The conference, Gbajabiamila noted, would examine what needs to be done to correct the trajectory. He also underscored the need for commitment to using the tools of parliamentary diplomacy and authority to set the continent irreversibly on the path to a future of honourable peace and abiding prosperity for all.