A former presidential aspirant under the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Salihu Othman Isah has congratulated the President-elect, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu on his victory, urging him to begin work in ernest to deliver on his pledge to salvage the nation.
Isah, a former youth advocate, conferred by the National Youth Council of Nigeria(NYCN) as one of the 50 young future leaders in the country,
particularly reminded Tinubu to make good his pledge to the Nigerian youths.
The activist gave the advise in an interview in reaction to the acceptance speech of the President-elect.
“Let me recall that against all odds, that as presidential candidate of the APC, he stood on the side of poor Nigerians by openly criticising the ill conceived and ill-timed Central Bank naira swap policy, saying it was mainly affecting small businesses and further downgrading survival of the masses.
“I place it on record that Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu was the only presidential candidate who dared the serving government’s naira swap policy as engineered by the Central Bank of Nigeria(CBN). By this, it will be correct to say he stood with Nigerians during the hardship caused therefrom by the policy.
Atiku Abubakar, the Peoples Democratic Party presidential candidate and Peter Obi of the Labour Party stood with Federal Government and the CBN thinking the policy was going to frustrate Tinubu’s chances of winning and unknown that the electorates were too sophisticated to be hoodwinked. Despite the policy, Tinubu won.
Isah assured that the President-elect has the pedigree and capacity to re-engineer the nation to higher pedestal of progress and development as he did in Lagos state governor from 1999-2007.
The former Executive Director, Youth Advocates for Better Advancement in Society said, the Tinubu we know will set the ball rolling without delay from Ground Zero. But I must add that he should be careful to assemble a winning team in line with global best practice.
According to the creative arts practitioner and former National Vice President of the Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN), “I forsee a President Tinubu putting together a cabinet capable of harnessing the potentials that abound in the six geo-political zones of the country. And he will hit the ground running from day one by announcing his appointees without delay.
Responding on the widespread allegation of rigging, the erstwhile chairman, North West zone of the Civil Liberties Organisation(CLO) opined that, no election in the world is hundred percent faultless. He however insisted the Tinubu victory will stand the test of time.
He explained that the election that heralded Presidents George Bush and Donald Trump in the United States were alleged to be flawed but this didn’t stop them from taking oath of office nor serving out their terms. So Asiwaju, the Jagaban Borgu will be sworn in and he will serve out his term successfully.
The civil rights activist disclosed: “If the 2023 presidential election is flawed, it means most or all the major parties manipulated the system.
“All of the major parties in the country may have manipulated the electoral process, especially going by anticidents.
“We grew up to witness election rigging in the country and I am sure it has not abated. Usually all political parties rig elections but they cannot all be declared winners. Even in the United States, the so called pacesetter of democratic governance, its electoral processes are not fool-proof and they usually move on afterwards. Tales were told how Hillary Clinton was rigged out and with claims of evidences shown to that effect. No street protests, no abuses, they did not denigrate the system or abuse individuals, the institutions handled it adequately. So why is it difficult to do same in Nigeria?”
The politician also commended nations, international institutions and world leaders, especially the United States, United Kingdom and the African Union(AU) among others that have endorsed and commended Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu and APC victory.
He equally hailed the President-elect for extending the olive branch to Atiku Abubakar and Peter Obi, the PDP and Labour Party candidates who lost the election but acknowledged they helped to deepen our democracy.
Isah is however confident that our democratic evolution will improve substantially in future.
He said, “But let’s be confident we shall get it correctly next time because our democratic governance is still in the learning process.”
“My final words to Asiwaju Tinubu is, remain focused in leadership of the country as you were focused all through the electioneering campaigns inspite of obvious and calculated attempts to provoke and distract you.”