Home Politics Interview: 2023 Presidential Election: Asiwaju Tinubu is honestly coming to serve-M4GN DG
Politics - January 4, 2023

Interview: 2023 Presidential Election: Asiwaju Tinubu is honestly coming to serve-M4GN DG

Hon. Okedara Kolawole, Director General/National Coordinator , Movement For Greater Nigeria (M4GN), one of the  Political Groups of All Progressives Congress (APC) and Supporter of the Presidential Candidate, Sen. Ahmed Bola Tinubu. He was the National Coordinator, Buhari Movement and in His Interview with Stanley Ihedigbo, speaks on the 2023 General Elections, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), chances of Tinubu becoming the next president of Nigeria and other issues.
What are your expectations for the incoming administration looking at the situation of the country?
My expectations for the new incoming government are total transformation and rapid development in terms of infrastructure, strong architectural security and a better education for all Nigerians irrespective of status. Education can be made absolutely free up to university level and I am very optimistic about it. We will get it better when we support the right candidate in the incoming presidential election.  The person we all know that got the track record is no other person than Asiwaju Ahmed Bola Tinubu, the APC Presidential Candidate.  He got the political acme, credibility, wisdom and experience on good governance.  God has endowed him with what it takes to lead Nigeria and make it a great nation in Africa. I will appeal to Nigerians to vote for him in the next few days as the president of Nigeria.
What are the fears and concerns you have about the elections, looking at the security challenges facing the nation?
Security challenge is a global issue presently. One thing I know for sure is that the 2023 general elections will come and go. I nurse no fear because those that are causing the havoc in Nigeria are afraid and agitating, because they will not win the presidential election. So, they are doing everything possible to cause fear, destabilization and instill fears into the minds of Nigerians. But behold, one thing  I know for sure is that God’s hand is in Nigeria because He has been the one uniting this country. On the issue of governance, the present government has been doing its best in terms of security. We know that they are not perfect and that’s the reason why I am sure with the likes of Tinubu, who has  the bold  mind  and who has always been doing his best without nepotism. I believe with him, the issue of security challenge will be a thing of the past and Nigerians will be proud of him as the president of the Giant of Africa.  So, I don’t entertain any fears and those who have be going around and destroying the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) offices, clearly shows that they have been defeated before the elections. Let Nigerians relax their minds, the security agencies are working hard and the majority of those hoodlums are been taken care of. And before the day of the general elections, Nigerians will enjoy peace and will continue to enjoy peace after the elections. I have a piece of advice for those formenting trouble across the country to desist or they will be put to shame and face the full wrath of the law.
It seems that only three presidential candidates are contesting for the election but INEC has cleared 18 presidential candidates. What is your take on that?
Every Nigerian has undeniable right to contest for the office of the presidency with Sen. Tinubu, the incoming president by the grace of Allah. In as much the other presidential candidates have their fundamental human right under Nigeria constitution to contest election, nobody should be stopped or be disturbed. But Nigerians should look at their track records of what they have been able to achieve individually, and for those who were once in government. Like the former governors, what they were able to achieve in their states in terms of infrastructure, security, setting the pace in good governance and human capacity development.  When you look at all these yardstick, you will agreed with me that Asiwaju Ahmed Bola Tinubu got all it takes, from his antecedent and track records when he was the governor of Lagos State. The then president, Olusegun Obasanjo withheld federal allocation of Lagos State and without anything coming from federal government, he was able to manage the state through building internal generation revenue which no other state of the federation can do or have done or can survive without the federal allocation. The former governor was able to pay salaries, there was free education to university level in the state. The government pays for the external examination fees of all the students in Lagos State. He engaged many hoodlums in the state; created a lot of employment opportunities for Lagos residents. The state was well secured because he invested much in security. Go and look at what is happening in Lagos State today, after several years he left government. The continuity of good governance as a result of good master plan he put in place. What I can tell Nigerians, is that Tinubu is God’s anointed sent to our nation to restore the glory of Nigeria and he has be doing excellently well in raising leaders. The record of leaders he raised and mentored from nobody to somebody  are there for the world to see. Many of them are either the Vice President, governors, senators, ministers, council chairpersons, members of assembly both in state and national level. He also invested heavily in Nigeria because he believes in the nation not like other presidential candidates who   invested outside the country; created jobs in foreign lands while their citizenry are looking for work to do. Look at the population of Lagos state, despite the land mark size, the city is able to manage every Nigerian. People are doing there businesses, without been molested or disturbed. During his time as a governor, he appointed Igbo, Hausa as commissioners and other tribes in different political offices. He is someone who believes in one Nigeria, and Nigerians shouldn’t vote for name but the man the cap fits, which is Asiwaju Tinubu. Nigerians shouldn’t be misled with big names, or someone who invested heavily in generators company to think of providing stable electricity for the public, or the person who had already told Nigerians that he would sell the public property to his friends and he has done that before when he was Vice President. 1999 to 2007. What about the other person who only invested in alcohol business and what is his antecedent?
Do you have trust in INEC to conduct credible, free and fair elections and before now, your party national chairman kicked against the use of Bimodal Voter Registration System (BVAS) and the Election Result Viewing Portal (IReV)?
I disagree with the information that our party leader was against the INEC election equipment.  BVAS and IReV  has come to stay and I want to tell you categorically clear that no party most especially our party , will say that they don’t want to use the INEC technology equipment.  We have been working around the country, canvassing for votes, with our presidential candidate Asiwaju Tinubu, despite what some people are saying about his age and health. He is not tired and will not be distracted. He has been moving from one state to another, engaging Nigerians. We have no fear and wouldn’t entertain any distraction from anybody.  We are going to the presidential election to win and we are not even giving anybody money to vote for our candidate.  We are moving around, campaigning for the sake of love we have for our country Nigeria and Asiwaju Tinubu. So, if anybody tells you that APC is afraid of BVAS, that’s their imagination.
 What is your advice to the security agents which also have important roles to play in security of the people and elections material, because most times, politicians used them to commit election malpractice?
My advice to the Nigeria security agencies is to be partisan and do their job professionally. The government that we have in place is responsive and responsible; all that is needed would be given to our security agencies, to work on the day of elections. They should perform their duty fairly and without fear. After the election, all Nigerians will come back to appreciate them for their job they did professionally.
 What is your take on the issue of vote buying and election crime, like ballot box snatchers?
With BVAS, the box snatching will be a things of the past because results are be collected electronically as voters are thumb printing,   the votes will reflect in the data base and it can’t be snatched. The nation is moving progressively in terms of technology, and issue of vote buying, looking at the monetary policy put in place by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), that wouldn’t be possible as before. We all know that elections in Nigeria are very expensive, even to conduct and campaigns by politicians. But with the limitations put in place by the apex bank on the currency, it would be able to address some of these things. So, I appeal to Nigerians, they shouldn’t be scared, as government is putting every policy in place to make sure, every thing works appropriately and accordingly. For me, I entertain no fear any more in Nigeria elections and when you have the right leadership in place, things start working systematically. Where people even have fears, your actions and attitude will make a statement. That is what I see this government is doing; they make statement by their actions, not by making noise on social media platforms or the conventional media. They are working silently, doing all the needful, and lot of people may kick against some of the government policies, to checkmate votes buying and all forms of atrocities. Anybody that wants to win elections should go to the grassroots, as APC Presidential candidate has been working, moving from one place to another, reaching the people.
Looking at your relationship and closeness to the Senator Ahmed Bola Tinubu, why must Nigerians vote for him?
Nigerians should vote for Tinubu, based on credibility, sincerity of purpose, experience. If you have watched him closely since 1999 or you want to check when he contested in 1992 to become a senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, you will discover that he fulfilled all his promises. And when he promises, be rest assured that he will do it.  He is the only presidential candidate who came up with his master plan on what he wants to do as president of Nigeria. Voting for him is voting the leader who will deliver dividends of democracy within a very short period of his government to the citizens.  Nigerians will be proud of Tinubu as their president, because he will accommodate everybody, irrespective of where you come from. He has demonstrated that  because when he was a governor, he made an Igbo man a commissioner , others were appointed into various state agencies. The same thing with the Hausa people; they were given appointments in local governments ,  and state agencies. Apart from the major tribes in Nigeria, other tribes benefited one way or the other in  his appointments. He has been tested, trusted and proven. Also, he is not coming because he needs money, but to make Nigeria a great nation in the world. Nigeria has what it takes to be a great nation and President Buhari is laying the foundation where Tinubu would continue from.
 What is your advice to the electorates and politicians ahead of the general elections?
My advice is for all the politicians to maintain sanity, all candidates of all the political parties should know that life of all Nigerians matters. Nobody should encourage political touts, hoodlumism, all forms of trouble. We should respect the right of every Nigerian. They have their right to vote for any candidates of their choice. Nobody should be harassed for voting candidates of their choice in any part of the country. Nigerians please, be security conscious. If you see something; say something by informing the security agents.

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