2023: We Will Not Allow Riff-raffs Take over Power, Babangida Aliyu Tells Osinbajo

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•Vice president says FG determined to win insecurity challenges

Ibrahim Shuaibu in Kano

A former governor of Niger state, Mr. Muazu Babangida Aliyu, yesterday described the Vice-President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo as the best candidate for the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the 2023 presidential election, saying the country would not allow those he described as riff-raffs take over power next year.

The former governor and Chairman Board of Trustees, Sir Ahmadu Bello Memorial Foundation, said these at the 2022 annual lecture of the foundation in Kano.

Aliyu, who is of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) said his party would not allow, “riff raffs to take over the power even if they bring all the money in this world.”

Babangida added: “Any riff-raff or moneybags will not get to the highest office in the land, even if they bring out money. Mr Vice President, do you know you are the best candidate in your party?”

He described Osinbajo as the only candidate that knows the country and has the acceptance of everyone across the country regardless of tribe and religion.

Speaking further, Aliyu said unless a clear paradigm shift was effected in correcting the present ills and turn the hand of the clock backward, the north would continue to slide backward, positing that, no one would ever be safe with persistent insecurity taken a heavy toll on the region.

Osinbajo who was in Kano for the memorial lecture, also paid a condolence visit to the families of late Bashir Othman Tofa, and late Islamic scholar, Dr. Ahmad Ibrahim Bamba of the Bayero University, Kano.

The vice president, while speaking earlier had disclosed that the federal government was working round the clock to ensure that those apprehended as a result of the insecurity challenges in the country are prosecuted.

“We are not unmindful of the present trauma the people of the north are currently undergoing. We are very much concerned about the future of our children and we are doing all we can to protect what we believe is in their best interest. The issue of banditry is not peculiar to Nigeria alone knowing the prevailing trend the world over,” he said.

Osinbajo who delivered he Sardauna memorial lecture explained: “The need for re-strategisation in the way we are doing in spheres of governance and leadership has also become imperative.

“We would continue to fail in our responsibility if we have no reason to address knotty issues affecting the nation. We should all believe that Nigeria belongs to every Nigerian irrespective of one’s ethnic or religious background.”

The Vice President described the late premier of northern region, Sir Ahmadu Bello, the Sardauna of Sokoto, as an exceptional icon in the business of governance whose sterling leadership quality would remain indelible in the political lexicon of the nation. He said differences pertaining to ethnic and religious decisions were what he fought against during his lifetime.

According to him, the issue of good governance and leadership in a democratic setting required the commitment and doggedness of a leader. Commenting on the role expected from the traditional institutions on the need to rise to the challenge of maintaining peace in the country, the vice president pointed out that the traditional institutions are indispensable in making the nation secure. He stated that, there was also the compelling need for the constitution to be reviewed in order to accommodate traditional authorities in view of the role they play in the society.

In his remarks, Kano state governor, Mr Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, extolled the sterling leadership qualities of the late premier of the northern region for leading by example and in exhibiting leadership devoid of primordial sentiment.