Kemi Olaitan in Ibadan
The vice-presidential candidate of the Social Democratic Party (SDP), Mr. Yusuf Salisu Buhari, has said the 2023 general election is about the future of the country, adding that the party is out to save the country from collapse.
Buhari, while addressing a press conference on Monday, in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, to herald a rally by the party scheduled for Tuesday, maintained that the election is beyond politics but about who we are as citizens of the country and the projection of the image of the country to the rest of the world.
He said the country is confronted with various challenges ranging from insecurity to economic crisis that could be attributed to bad leadership, insisting that this is not Nigeria of our dream and nothing is working again in the country.
“Our moral values have collapsed. There is a systemic failure. There is a daily report of killings and kidnapping in the six geo-political zones. Our Nigeria has come to a very sad place in its history,” he said.
Buhari said the task ahead “requires governance with full awareness of our differences so that we can fully harness and utilize the potentials of these differences with justice”.
According to him, “We must remind and re-educate ourselves that indeed our inherited cultures and religions promote modesty, good conduct, integrity, justice, honesty and simple kindness to neighbours and even to strangers.
“This election is not first about defeating other opposing parties. This election is beyond politics. It is about who we are as a country and how we project the image of who we are to the rest of the world.
“We must think of the Nigerian people: the gallant men in uniform who sacrifice their lives to maintain law and order and the dignity of our country; the frontline workers who continue to risk their lives to save others; the farmers who refuse to allow insurgents, bandits and kidnappers stop them from sustaining our human existence, and our numerous young men and women working diligently as entrepreneurs or sports people, on the national and global stages who have become a source of pride to Nigeria.”
He said the ambition of the presidential candidate of the party, Prince Adewole Adebajo, was borne out of his passion to serve the country and liberate the people from the shackles of poverty, adding that when given the opportunity to rule the country, the party will ensure social justice, provide direction, protection and inspiration to all Nigerians.
“We will be honest in the process and win back the trust of Nigerians in leadership. We will ensure we put in place all necessary conditions to enable our population to prosper. We shall create equal opportunities for all.
For employment, we plan to create 30 million jobs from 2,000 US companies in agric, infrastructure, ICT, education, entertainment etc,” he said.
On the reported cases of violence in some parts of the country, he said such would not deter the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) from conducting the 2023 elections, adding that INEC at different fora has assured the leadership of the registered political parties of its readiness to conduct the elections as scheduled.
He assured the people that elections would hold in the South-east, North-east and some other parts of the country that are having security challenges.