to do with Fulani herdsmen? There is more fundamental matter here, and the earlier the government looked into it the better. Unfortunately, the government is headed by a Fulani and tends to protect the image of other Fulanis that they are not killers and get prejudiced in what they do. But there is no need to protect what is not true. If there is anything to protect, it should be the lives and properties of Nigerians. Impression is being given that it is Fulani people that are involved in the mayhem. So government must try as much as possible to remove this toga, otherwise it will not be in the interest of everybody.
DT: What do you say on the president spending appropriated funds for the purchase of Tukano helicopters?
In fact, the purchase of the helicopters was something that originated from the National Assembly. It was when a team from the United States visited the National Assembly that this idea was bounced from their discussion. There are those who defend the government on account that there is a Supreme Court judgment that declared the Excess Crude Account as an illegal account. Therefore any withdrawal from it should not follow legal process, as far as I am concerned it doesn’t make sense. Two wrongs do not make a right. If you say it does not need to follow legal process, why then did the president recently write to the National Assembly to put it in the budget? As far as I’m concerned, that is an admission of guilt. The relationship between the executive and the legislator is always frosty and this is not peculiar to Nigeria.
DT: How would you rate President Buhari’s administration and his 2019 re-election bid?
The fact that the administration has not done well is obvious and I am not going to do overkill. President Buhari came in on a very high ethical standard that he is a man of integrity, he will fight corruption, quench the insurrection in the Northeast and provide good governance. But the government has failed on all the four pedestals. But I found it a bit difficult to judge him because of my background as a trained medical doctor. I have suffered life threatening illness myself and under the condition, nothing else mattered to me except my survival. When a man that is so sick like Buhari doesn’t do well, I find it extremely difficult to condemn him because of my background as a medical doctor. Perhaps if things were the other way round, he may have performed better. If he spent 150 days out 360 days in the hospital, that is really serious. I will not stand here and condemn a man that went through life threatening illness.
On the platform which he came in, he has failed woefully. But my mind is telling me that the man is not that bad and that the problem he has is his ill health. That is why I wrote an article and advised him being a great man that God has been very kind to not to contest for second term. All his popularity, reputation and cult-like followership will pale to nothing if he re-contests and his health fails him. I wish him well and I pray that God will give him strength in this remaining period of his tenure to finish well and end well. But he will be stretching his luck too far if he attempts to go beyond that.
Buhari should aspire to end as a father figure in this country and I will personally applaud him for that. I will even canvass that everyone should put partisanship aside and support him to finish well and give him a grand exit. We do not have any father figure in this country. All our leaders have either destroyed themselves or we destroyed them. Let us preserve Buhari as historic legacy. But Buhari’s ambition to go for a second term and continue in office will be a threat to the existential wellbeing of Nigerians and corporate existence of the country.