By John Shiklam in Kaduna
President Muhammad Buhari said yesterday that houses, companies and other property seized from “corrupt” politicians would be sold and the money plough into the treasury to avoid the mistake he made as a military Head of State in 1984.
Speaking in Kaduna at the All Progressives Congress (APC) Presidential campaign rally at the Ahmadu Bello Stadium, Buhari said fighting corruption in a democracy is not easy.
He recalled that upon becoming a military of Head of State in 1984, he arrested all corrupt politicians and detained them and after investigations, their property stolen were seized.
He, however, regretted that the seized property were returned to the thieves after he was over thrown.
Buhari who spoke in Hausa language said: “Fighting corruption in a democracy is difficult, you know what I did before (as a military Head of State). I arrested the big men and detained them and I ordered for investigation.
“Those who were found to have stolen, we seized their stolen things from them.
“Only two people were not corrupt, the two of them have died – Bilyaminu Usman, Education Minister and Mallam Adamu Ciroma, former Central Bank (CBN) governor and minister. They were not found guilty. “
He lamented that after he was overthrown the seized property were returned to thieves.
“I was arrested and detained and the stolen property was returned to the thieves.
“As God will have it, I am back again. This has strengthened my faith and by the grace of God, all those who looted this country, we will follow them one by one and arrest them.
“All the property that have been seized from them; houses and companies would be sold and the money will be ploughed back into the treasury.
“When I was arrested, they returned the property to them, this time around we will sell the stolen property…” he said.
According to him, his administration has fulfilled its promises to Nigerians.
Buhari, however, promised to address problems of youths unemployment and security, especially the Boko Haram insurgency and kidnapping.
Also speaking, the Director General of the Presidential Campaign and Minister of Transport, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi, urged Nigerians to reject the PDP, saying that the party had nothing to show for the 16 years it was in power.
He said “The President has live all his life in Kaduna so you owe him one thing- to give him total support. Vote for him. Don’t just vote and go to sleep, PDP has a rigging machinery. Seat down there to make sure your vote counts”.
Also in his remarks, Kaduna state governor, Mallam Nasir el-Rufai assured that Buhari will receive massive votes in the February 16 elections.
He said Buhari has done well for the state and for Nigeria, adding that the APC will get over 80 per cent of votes in the presidential election.
“By the grace of God, in the next election, these three states will give you more than 30 per cent of your total votes.
Kaduna state gave you 70 per cent of its votes in 2015 – 1.1 million votes. This was when our voters register was just 3. 3 million.
“Now our voters register is about 4 million and with the efforts of all the stakeholders here, including many decampees from PDP, we are confident that this time around, based on the work you have done in Kaduna state and Nigeria, the voters in Kaduna state will give you more than 80 per cent of the total votes.
“By the grace of God and so long as we have the enabling environment- security and credible electoral officers, Kaduna state is yours, there is nothing to worry about.
“Our track record as a party and your track record and the work done by APC governors, is enough for people to vote APC again” the governor said.
el-Rufai also took a swipe on Atiku Abubakar, Presidential candidate of the PDP for travelling to the United States.
According to him, “Atiku is in America after begging for 12 years to get visa and people in the PDP are celebrating instead of crying. So all of a sudden, going to America is an achievement?
“Mr. President, I first went to America when I was 23 years old, it is not an achievement, but in the minds of the PDP, getting a visa after begging for 12 years is an achievement.”
He called on the people to “forget those who need to go to America to get validation before they contest election in Nigeria.
Do you want to vote those who will go to Trump before they come back to Nigeria? Do you those that will take all your money to America?…
“Atiku Abubakar should be explaining to Nigerians why he did not go to America for 12 years.”
Speaking in a similar vain, National Chairman of the APC, Adams Oshiomhole, said Atiku and the PDP were responsible for the collapse of the textile industries in Kaduna and urged the people not to vote them to power again.