*Pastor says no pain, no gain
Tobi Soniyi in Abuja
One-time running mate to President Muhammadu Buhari, and the General Overseer of the Latter Rain Assembly, Pastor Tunde Bakare, has told Nigerians to be patient and endure the hardship they are currently facing.
Bakare, who spoke when he paid a private visit to the president at the Presidential Villa, Abuja on Friday, said Nigerians stood to gain thereafter.
He said the nation had been driven in the wrong direction in the past and that redirecting it to the path of rectitude must definitely come with some pains.
Asked to comment on the hardship facing the nation, Bakare said: “When you are driving on a wrong direction, for example, you are going to Ibadan and you face Badagry and you get to Cotonu and you realize you have gone in the wrong direction for too long a time, then you turn back and make a u-turn, there will be some suffering you have to go through.
“Pain is part of gain. No pain, no gain. The years of wastage and all that we have done wrong had finally caught up with us. All we are praying for is wisdom for this government to do things right and to do the right things so that gradually, we can begin to come out of the woods.”
Asked to comment on Buhari’s performance so far, “It is too early and too soon to begin to judge. If there is anything I know about Mr. President, it is that he has a good heart. He loves this country and he wants the country to run well. But it takes time. I know we are all impatient and in a hurry and I trust we will come out of the woods.”
On whether he would advise the president to reshuffle his cabinet following the lack lustre performance of some of them, the pastor said “He knows what he has given them. For example, I have not given any appointment to anyone so I can’t judge their performance. But if there are yardsticks and standards given to them and if they have performed below bar, definitely, the president would not mind at the right time to do those things.
“I will like to appeal to all Nigerians that we should just excise a bit of patience. This change will not become chain that will tie all of us down. Change for good takes time and we should just exercise a little bit more of patience. We trust that government is listening and the leaders are listening too and they will respond to the yearnings and aspirations of Nigerians.”
Asked his opinion on budget padding, Bakare said “I just returned to the country last Friday. I am reading about it. I will make my decision when I have checked both sides. And I will definitely speak on that.”
On why he paid a visit on the president, he said “I came to see the president and he is doing very well health wise. That’s all I came to do.”