By Deji Elumoye
National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Senator Bola Tinubu, yesterday stressed the need for Nigeria to remain united to tackle the country’s challenges.
Tinubu, while canvassing for people’s support for President Muhammadu Buhari as he addressed the nation’s challenges, also dismissed speculations about a frosty relationship with the president.
Speaking on Monday night after an hour closed-door meeting with Buhari, Tinubu, in company with a former Interim National Chairman of the APC, Chief Bisi Akande, stated that a concerted and united response was what was needed presently to address the various crises facing Nigeria.
According to him, some of the ingredients needed to overcome the crises include “cooperation, understanding and determination, effective security and effective information.”
He added that there is no president who will want his country in chaos.
“Have you seen one? Point one to me. There is no one that will want his citizens exposed to banditry and danger.
“There’s no president or leader that will want his nation fractured by tribalism, religious differences and all that. It calls for serious management and serious evaluation and dialogue once in a while,” he stated.
He said he was at the State House to discuss with Buhari on finding solutions to the various national challenges and urged Nigerians to support the government in its journey to finding solutions to them.
According to him, the current challenges are not peculiar to Nigeria, adding that finding solutions, through consultations and exchange of views and ideas on how to change the fortunes of the country should be collective and contributive.
He said: “My visit is to generally review the perceptions going on outside there and equally focus on the security across the country more. The president will have more information than we have, but we are his ears close to the ground and we have to exchange views so that a better Nigeria is grounded. That’s all.
“The best way is what we are doing; coming together to reduce banditry, to move for unity and be able to bring a better Nigeria to the people.
“The welfare of our people is extremely important. And yes, every nation will go through these curves and difficult times. How we communicate it to the people, what are the areas to help make it easier for people to bear, those are ideas on how to be able to change the leadership of the country.”
On the perceived frosty relationship between him and Buhari, Tinubu said they maintained a cordial relationship, adding that he doesn’t have to be seen often at the State House to show the warm ties between them.
“There is nothing like that, nothing like unhealthy. Who is our doctor? Is it social media that is measuring the relationship? I don’t have to disturb him openly on camera. No, we have so many ways to look at issues. We have nothing like that. We have a very close and cordial, frank and honest relationship,” he said.
On the forthcoming 2023 general election and the chances of the APC returning as the ruling party, he said: “I don’t want to predict that one right now, I don’t want to do that subject now. The chances are as bright as a midnight star. We’ll continue to work for a better Nigeria and that’s what we need.
“We cannot interject politics and assumption into everything, we have a nation to build, and we have a baton to pass. You can depend on Buhari that he will not spend one hour beyond his tenure. He will do that; he will comply with the constitution. So, how does it happen? Read the Nigerian constitution and find out from the INEC website.”