Deputy Speaker of the Cross River State House of Assembly, Hon. Joseph Bassey, has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to allow Nigerians to elect his successor in 2023 for the growth and development of the country.
Bassey, who made the call during an interaction with newsmen in Calabar, said the masses should be allowed to elect leaders that will be accountable to them and not to a certain cabal or group of individuals.
He said that what was needed from the president ahead of 2023 in order to allow the country to move forward was to allow the masses to have their say through the ballot.
“At this point, what President Buhari can do to allow Nigeria to move forward is to allow a successor that Nigerians will chose. The President should allow for a free and fair election where the system will run smoothly.
“But when you want to do it politically in a way where a cabal will bring up somebody, a square peg in a round hole; then you are not going to help Nigerians.
“Nigerians need that confidence of electing their own leaders that will be accountable to them. But when a cabal produces a President, that person will first be accountable to the cabal and millions of Nigerians will suffer the consequences.
“If Buhari can allow Nigerians to elect their President in 2023, and also allow the electoral system and the police to operate without interference, he would have had the best of time.
“Buhari is a man of honour and integrity, we expect him to allow the masses to come out en mass and elect their President in 2023”, he said.
The lawmaker said that former President Goodluck Jonathan is enjoying the goodwill of Nigerians and international community for allowing a free and fair presidential polls in 2015.
“People were not expecting an opposition to take over power in 2015, but Jonathan solidified democracy and allowed the will of the masses to prevail”, he said.
Bassey further said that it was unnecessary for Buhari to even comment on not contesting for a third term, adding that he has no constitutional right to do so.
“The constitution gives room for two terms for executive positions. For him to make that statement it means he had the intent to run.
“The mandate given to the president is too fresh; I urge the President to be focused on governance by revamping the economic sector and tackling the security challenges across the country.
“Naturally, Buhari has got it all, being a military and civilian president; it’s a privilege. What is paramount now is the welfare and security of Nigerians”, he said.
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A former Deputy National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Olabode George has urged federal government to relax the lockdown it imposed on Lagos State as a result of COVID- 19 pandemic.
George, who made the call in a statement in Lagos, yesterday said the lockdown imposed since March 29 was adversely affecting livelihoods and bringing up security challenges.
He said though government intended to curb the spread of the virus with the lockdown, the directive had left many Nigerians hungry at home without palliatives.
The PDP chieftain noted that there must be a balance between curbing the spread of the virus and protecting livelihoods and asked the government to relax the lockdown while putting safety measures in place.
“Everywhere in Lagos is now locked down. The markets, banking halls, the local grocery shops, the supermarkets, the transportation services are all halted, frozen by the federal government directives since March 29.
“On the surface level, the federal government’s position is to ensure safety, prevent communal spread of the virus and banish this scourge from our shores.
“Lagosians have been staying at home for about a month now. In a largely informal economy where most of our people depend on daily wages, the burden of lack of income is devastating.
“There is a natural growing anger in Lagos as the most vulnerable are ravaged with hunger,” George said.
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