Omololu Ogunmade in Abuja
Kaduna State Governor, Malam Nasir el-Rufai, yesterday in Abuja said due to ongoing combined security operations on Abuja -Kaduna Road, he could confidently declare that the road was now safe.
El-Rufai, who spoke in the State House, after holding a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari, was reacting to a declaration in the Senate last week that the road was the most dangerous route in Africa.
Provoked by the Senate declaration, el-Rufai said a lot of submissions or perhaps resolutions in the Senate were not based on facts but rather aimed at merely making headlines in the media, insisting that in contrast to Senate’s claim, Abuja -Kaduna Road is now safe.
He said: “If you believe everything that comes out of the Nigerian Senate, you will have serious mental health problems. There are things that are said there that are just for the gallery, for the media.
I don’t know what statistics that were used to determine that the Kaduna-Abuja Road is the most dangerous anywhere.
“I like facts. I like using figures. I wish the people that said that will use figures. But I am saying that no matter what anyone said, last week, I am assuring Nigerians that the Kaduna – Abuja road is quite safe now and would be so long as the initiative put in place by the various security agencies, details of which I am not willing to disclose.”
El-Rufai, who said he was in the State House to brief Buhari on security situation in Kaduna, also reacted to the viral criticisms of his tutorial on how to dethrone the godfather of Lagos State.
He had while speaking at an event in Lagos, advised his host audience to apply the template he claimed to have used to end godfatherism in Kaduna State, in Lagos without mentioning the name of former governor of Lagos State, Senator Bola Tinubu, as the target of his discussion.
But his critics have drawn the conclusion that he was actually referring to Tinubu.
But asked if he was not deliberately courting trouble by his perceived remarks on Tinubu, El-Rufai was swift to say that he made a general statement and it is only up to Tinubu to admit if he is the godfather of Lagos State.
The governor was also quick to state that if anyone feels offended by his remarks, it is his own business.
He insisted that he was only giving advice in response to a question by a member of his audience, insisting that he was fearless about his comments and owed no one any apology as well.
El-Rufai said: “I don’t know if he is the godfather of Lagos. It’s up to him to say that. What I know for sure is that we have retired godfathers in Kaduna and I have told those that asked me the question that ‘there are six million registered voters in Lagos but only one million voted,’ in the last election.
“There are five million people that you can bring into the electoral play ground and you can defeat anyone if you work hard. It’s hard work. It’s four years. That is what I said and if anyone feels offended by that that is his business or her business.
“I have not made recommendations to Lagos. I am the governor of Kaduna State. I know Kaduna politics pretty well and I played my role in my party towards the success of the party.
“I have not made recommendation for anyone. I am just saying, if I am asked a question and I gave an answer, anyone that feels offended by the answer, it’s his own business.
“I have no apologies. I don’t apologise for my views. My views are thought-out and I put them there. I don’t have to explain anything to anyone.