* As president’s campaign train storms Kano today
President Muhammadu Buhari has declared that he has never been found to be corrupt in all the leadership positions he had ever held in the country.
The President made this declaration yesterday in Abakaliki, Ebonyi state, while campaigning at the Township Stadium for his re-election in the February Presidential election.
The Ebonyi State Council of Traditional Rulers chaired by HRH Eze Charles Mkpuma, had earlier at the Government House endorsed the second term bid of the President on the strength of his performance.
At the campaign ground, the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) alleged that the presidential candidate of the opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, was working for western interests in the country.
Buhari, before winning the 2015 Presidential election, was a former military Head of State between 1983-85, Governor of the Northeastern State 1975–1976, chairman Petroleum Trust Fund (PTF) between 1994-95.
He said, “All my period in public service I have never been found wanting. When I was the governor for the north east, when I was minister of petroleum and subsequently the head of state, when I was arrested and investigated, they found nothing on me.”
The President thanked Ebonyi people for the rally as he urged the people to hold him to his words.
He said when he came for campaigns in 2015, he promised three things: the first was security and that at that time 17 local governments in the north east were under the control of Boko Haram but now there is no local government under their control.
According to him, his administration has also delivered on his promise of revamping the economy of the country because he had been able to ensure food security. He added that Nigerians no longer depend on imported rice even as the money saved from rice importation has now been deployed to building infrastructure across the country.
“Now,we are building roads, rails,” he said while calling on the people of the state to vote for him at the February 16th Presidential election.
Chairman of the Ebonyi Traditional Rulers Council had at an earlier
meeting with the President declared that the state governor, Engnr. Dave Umahi, of the PDP remains the council sole candidate for the March governorship election but endorsed the President for the second term.
Mkpuma said the President relationship with Umahi coupled with his performance in the last four years and his love for the people of the South-East earned him their support.
He said “We believe that your robust relationship with our son, the governor, and your love for him and the state will surely earn you and only you, votes in Ebonyi state irrespective of party differences.”
Speaking at the rally, APC’s National Chairman, Adams Osiomhole, who officially received 25 other opposition parties’ leaders who have resolved to work for the APC, accused the presidential candidate of the PDP of working for foreign interest.
According to him, Atiku who recently wrote letters to UK, US and EU, alleging that the President had breached democratic norms by suspending the Chief Justice of the Federation (CJN), was only appealing to western sentiments angling to take over Nigeria’s economy.
He said Atiku in the letter demonstrated that he was a man frustrated by his inordinate ambition because he was unable to establish any infraction of democratic norms by the President.
Oshiomhole described Atiku as a normadic politician who had had causes to change parties without qualms in pursuit of his presidential ambition in the few years of the nation’s democracy.
Commenting on Atiku’s vow to privatize the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) even if they would kill him, the APC boss said the opposition candidate was only appealing to the sentiments of the western world which has been looking for ways to take over the control of the nation’s economy in order to milk it dry.
“The right to defend Nigeria’s sovereignty is not negotiable,” he said, adding that gravitating toward western interest would not only harm the nation’s economy but end up in pauperizing the people.
He maintained that Atiku deferring to western interest will only injure Nigeria economy urging voters reject him at the polls.
The APC boss however described the forth coming general election as a class war between the elites and the poor, even as he insisted that Buhari’s policies, including TraderMoni, are pro-poor.
Oshiomhole asserted that no external force can impose leaders on Nigeria even as he scored the President high in the fight against corruption.
The Ebonyi state APC chairman, Eze Nwachukwu Eze, who also spoke at the rally described Governor Umahi’s administration as a total failure, urging the president to resist the temptation of believing the governor’s sweet talks that he will support his re-election.
The Ebonyi APC party boss said the civil servants in the state have been short-changed by the PDP administration. He said that the governor pays only what he feels like paying at the end of every month.
Meanwhile, the All Progressives Congress Presidential Campaign Council has denied suspending its Presidential Campaign rally slated to hold today.
The council in a statement issued yesterday by Festus Keyamo, Director Strategy Communication, said the notice has become necessary due to misinformation in certain quarters that the rally has been scheduled.
“This is to inform all our party faithful and supporters in Kano State that the Presidential Campaign Rally will hold Thursday, January 31, 2019 as originally scheduled.
He accused the opposition of spreading false information to the public aimed at dissuading supporters of President Muhammadu Buhari from turning out en masse to receive the President.
He advised the general public to disregard any of such misinformation and urged all supporters to come and receive President as he makes his grand entrance into Kano State