Ekiti State Governor Ayodele Fayose has admitted that President Muhammadu Buhari is like his own grandfather and therefore cannot abuse him, even as he insisted that he is not fit to rule what he called ‘complex Nigeria’ at this moment.
The governor, who spoke at the an event organized by the Oyo State chapter of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) to celebrate the World Press Freedom Day in Ibadan, said those who voted for Buhari in the last presidential election did not know who he was, adding that in the last one year, Nigeria had never had it so bad.
Fayose said: “people say that I abuse Buhari. I am not abusing him because he is like my grandfather, but I know the history. Eighty per cent of people that voted for Buhari in the West did not know him. They are between 18 and 40. They voted because they wanted change desperately and I agree with them. He left government 32 years ago so they did not experience his rule.
“Today, the Peoples Democratic Party is no longer in government so they should stop blaming the PDP. They told us that dollars would become one to one but where is that today. The regime of fuel subsidy is gone and we now have food subsidy. Queue is back at filling stations. Whatever I say is divine. The next to happen will be removal of Kogi State governor. I have not lost a battle in my life and when I lost one, I came back to win.
“We have never had it so bad like in the last 12 months; electricity has gone to zero and we no longer have light in our houses. I am here to tell Nigerians that we are in the wrong direction because you cannot give what you don’t have. There is time to retire because of the diminishing return on the functionality of the brain. At 75, my mother can do little.”
The governor also criticized the corruption fight of President Buhari, describing it as biased.
“When you want to deal with corruption, do it whole heartedly. Don’t say because this person has now joined the All Progressives Congress, he is now a saint. When I was supporting ACN, they gave me many titles. Now that I am no longer with them, they see me as enemy,” he said.
The governor admonished journalists to stay on the path of truth and support the truth no matter their closeness to politicians.
Speaking on the financial situation of his state, Fayose said the debt of the immediate past government had become a burden to the state because more than N1bn was being deducted from its allocation to service the debt. He informed that the repayment schedule of the debt spanned over 20 years.
“When I left as governor in 2006, I left N10.4bn in the coffer but when I returned eight years later, I met debt. Every month, N1.5bn is removed from the state allocation to service the debt of the past administration. Those who ran states aground cannot become lecturers on administration,” Fayose said.
While reiterating his support for Ali Modu Sherif as PDP chairman, Fayose called on older people in the party to allow younger ones to run it because their ideas led to the ‘accident’ that the party had in 2015 elections.
“People are tired of seeing the same old faces. The older generation should take the back seat and allow the youth to do it. When we need them, we will consult them. Many young people are dying with their knowledge. They should rise and challenge the older politicians.
The governor bemoaned the killings perpetrated by the Fulani herdsmen, saying the gains of victory over Boko Haram were being eroded with the inaction of the Federal Government over activities of the herdsmen. He also said that it was possible that Boko Haram fighters had transformed to herdsmen.
On the strategy to employ to combat the herdsmen menace, Fayose said if the herdsmen grazed on Ekiti farm, the people would retaliate by poisoning water for the cattle to drink.
“I have told my people in Ekiti; if the herdsmen graze on our farm and try to attack us, we will put Gamalin 20 (poison) in the water for their cattle to drink. Who is giving them AK 47 rifles? Who is supporting them? We must be ready to defend ourselves.” [myad]