BY AHURAKA ISAH, Abuja
Governors and some political leaders from the North central geo-political zone have called on President Muhammadu Buhari to seek re-election during the 2019 general elections in the country.
The group took the decision at the North Central meeting of the National Committee of Buhari Support Groups in Abuja.
They however vowed that they are not prepared to persuade or preach to him, but that they will compel him to re-contest because there is no other person who can come up for now to sustain the change and economic growth taking place in the country at present other than President Buhari.
Prominent among those who called on Buhari to seek a second term in office, were Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State, Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State, Governor Tanko Al-Makura of Nasarawa State, and Senator George Akume.
The motion at the meeting for Buhari to contest a second term in office was moved by Senator George Akume and was seconded by Governor Lalong of Plateau State.
The motion was thereafter unanimously adopted by the audience comprising All Progressives Congress, APC, stalwarts from the zone.
Citing reasons for their decision, Senator Akume, listed successes in the fight against terrorism, economic recovery, sustenance of democracy, restoration of Nigeria’s reputation in the comity of nations, and Buhari’s personal integrity and patriotism as justification for their call.
He added that the constitution recognised that four years were too short for leaders to record lasting achievements and legacies for the people hence the provision for a second term.
Lending his voice to the discussion, Governor Ortom said, “For 2019, there is no credible presidential candidate for the APC other than Buhari.”
And President Muhammadu Buhari, in a speech delivered on his behalf by Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, assured that the economy is set to be on a better pedestal following steps already taken by government in that regards.
Buhari said, “When you elected us into office, you did so with the conviction that our dear nation needed to be put on a new pedestal for the dreams conceived by our founding fathers, dreams that we have adopted to be realized.
The full weight of this responsibility informed our careful, slow and steady start to the governance of Nigeria in the last 30 months. We took a deliberate decision to take a closer look at the situation we found before setting out to implement our plans for the country’s recovery.”
According to him, “We are convinced of the need to establish a firm foundation upon which a united, peaceful and prosperous nation can be built for this and succeeding generations of Nigerians. I remain very grateful to all Nigerians tor their patience and understanding as we go through the difficult steps necessary to achieve this objective.
“We are aware that the journey has been difficult in the last two and a half years, but we have managed to stop the downward spiral and can confidently assert that the worst is over. Nigeria is back on the path to growth having eased out of recession. We shall continue to vigorously pursue the task of diversifying the nation’s economy to remove our over-reliance on oil”.
He said towards this end, government shall continue to count on the unflinching support of Nigerians especially those who trooped out to convince fellow countrymen and women to vote for this administration.