The National Leader, All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu on Monday paid a visit to President Muhammadu Buhari at the Aso Rock Villa in company of former interim Chairman of the party, Chief Bisi Akande.
Asiwaju Tinubu spoke to journalists briefly after the meeting. In this brief chat, the former Lagos State governor spoke on what needs to be done to defeat banditry and the general state of insecurity in the country.
Why have you come to see the President this evening?
It’s to generally review the perceptions going on outside there and equally focus on the security across the country more. He 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 guaranteed. That’s all.
What is the best way forward?
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 this 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.
Your last formal engagement with the President was in January 2020. As a result, Nigerians have started insinuating that there’s a kind of unhealthy relationship between you and the President. What can you say?
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, is it? No, we have so many ways to look at issues. We have nothing like that.
So your relationship with Mr. President is very cordial?
Very, very… very close and cordial, frank and honest.
Given the prevailing challenge of security in Nigeria at the moment, as you have said, what does the President need at this moment from Nigerians?
Cooperation, understanding and determination. Effective security, effective information. 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. That’s all.
President Buhari has made it clear that he will abide by the Constitution and leave the scene at the end of his tenure. What are the chances of your party retaining power in 2023?
No, 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 you need.
We cannot inject politics and assumptions into everything, we have a nation to build; 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 it happens? Read the Nigerian Constitution and find out from INEC website.