“I can assure Nigerians that they would not be disappointed voting APC government back to power.”
Joe Effiong and Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Uyo
President Muhammadu Buhari and the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), has said Nigerians will not regret voting him and the APC back to power in 2019. This is even as he has promised to wipe out whatever remains of the Boko Haram terrorist group and free Nigerians from their nefarious activities.
Addressing a large crowd which turned out to witness the kick-off of the APC campaign at Godswill Akpabio International Stadium, Uyo, Buhari, however, warned that there would be no more freebies under the APC, hence Nigerians had better work and earn a living because there would be “no more handouts.”
He said the APC has campaigned on three cardinal programmes: revamping the economy, security and fighting corruption.
While daring the opposition to fault the achievements of his administration on those programmes, the president said when he came into office in 2015, Boko Haram were in control of 17 local government areas in Borno and Yobe states, but currently, the terrorist group is not in control of any particular council area in the entire country.
“I can assure Nigerians that they would not be disappointed voting APC government back to power. Now Boko Haram is not involved in any local government in Nigeria and I promise that we will clear them off when we come back,” the president said.
On the fight against corruption, the president said it has yielded much positive impact starting with the Treasury Single Account (TSA) implemented by his administration and which has led to recovery of lots of looted funds.
“We will inform Nigerians from time to time how much we have recovered from the exercise,” he said. “On corruption, we have said those who are corrupted will be investigated and prosecuted, we have recovered cash, properties and with the Treasury Single Account (TSA) monies can now be traced.”
President Buhari who was presented with the flag of the party, stressed that the fight against corruption would be intensified through the prosecution of those found culpable just as he did when he was military head of state. He urged Nigerians to vote for APC, assuring that they will not regret it. He said, “No Nigerian will regret voting for us.”
The National Chairman of the APC and Deputy Chairman of the Campaign Council, Adams Oshiomhole, said the people of South- South would vote for APC all round.
“This coming election ,one of the issues that will form basis of our campaign is character. The PDP has decided to look for mud to throw at the president but the more they do that the more Nigerians laugh at them. Nigerians know who you are and they know who the PDP is. The PDP candidate has put Nigerians on notice that he wants to sell the NNPC, the South -South as producer of oil will not allow that,” Oshiomole said.
He later presented the APC flag, the party’s gubernatorial candidates for Akwa Ibom, Nsima Ekere, Cross River, Senator John Eno, Delta, Great Ogboru, and Rivers, Tonye Cole, to President Buhari. Responding on behalf of the candidates, Ekere promised to work for the success of the party in the coming elections both for the presidential and gubernatorial polls.
The co-chairman of the campaign council and national leader of the party, Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu, described the rally as a successful one, saying the stadium being filled was a sign of endorsement for the continuity of hope and development.
Tinubu said Akwa Ibom would be returned to the path of progress left by the former PDP governors in the person s of Obong Victor Attah and Sen Godswill Akpabio when the APC governorship candidate, Mr Nsima Ekere shall have been elected in 2019
According to him, the PDP is a bunch of contradictions. “I read their response to 2019 budget; it is shallow, full of contradictions and nothing Nigerians should hope for.
“For the sake of this country, we will re-elect Buhari, APC that will give you hope and diversification of the economy. As the largest producer of oil, we will continue to support you to develop your infrastructure. We are strongly determined to change the course and redirect the vessel of this country, this is what Buhari and the APC is all about.
“Vote for your future and not for corruption, for 16 years they have you darkness. If they had concentrated on electricity alone, without which they would not have been development, but they didn’t do even one thing. They say they want to come back; no, no backwardness for Nigeria, for Akwa Ibom,” Tinubu said
The Director General of the campaign council, Rotimi Amaechi, who said the party has been extremely busy in the past four years, explained that four years ago they promised to improve on the economy, enhance security and fight corruption, and that they have kept their promises.
He said those that said APC promised bring down the exchange rates to one dollar per one naira and to reduce fuel price are magicians.
Amaechi said, “We are not voodoo economists; we got in and saw the challenges, we never knew they have stolen all the money, we thought they had conscience. When we got in, Mr. President challenged us to rescue the country; even as ministers we felt the pain of change. As Governor of Rivers, I couldn’t sleep in Kano because Kano was attacked, Abuja was attacked. We have made improvement in security. The changes we made led to recession, the World Bank said we won’t come out in three years but we came out in 10 months.”
He appealed to Nigerians to give the APC another chance to complete the change assignment and to create employment by voting en-masse to APC.
“If you vote for PDP they will be so hungry and will steal money and we will be back to recession. If PDP left $2 billion the rail station would have been completed up to Ilorin. We are here to ask you to vote for us to complete the jobs,” Amaechi said.