By; Bayo Akamo, Ibadan.
Ekiti State Governor, Dr Ayodele Fayose Tuesday declared that he is not fighting President Muhammadu Buhari as a person but only criticising his style of administration for the sustenance of Nigeria’s growing democracy.
Governor Fayose stated this in Ibadan while delivering this year’s Oyo Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ) World Press Freedom Day lecture titled “Journalists and Politics, Two sides of a Coin” held at the NUJ Press Centre, Iyaganku.
The governor maintained that his criticism of President Buhari should be seen in good fate and healthy for Nigeria democracy rather than been perceived as his being nursing personal grudge against the President considering the fact that “President Mohammadu Buhari is old enough to be my grandfather”
“I don’t abuse Buhari because he is my grandfather. But we all must not sleep and face the same direction in this country. The people voted for him because they wanted change, and I agreed with that because we really needed change. They told Nigerians that when they get into power there will be no subsidy and there will be no queues again but today full subsidy and queues are here,” he said.
He quickly added that “being my grandfather” does not mean he would not criticise him when going in the wrong direction, noting that he would rather die than concea the truth .
Lamenting that the problem with most politicians in the country presently was that “they were afraid to die and they were afraid to be locked away”, he said as for him, “I am never afraid to die or be locked away” but talk when the ship of the nation is drifting away dangerously to perdition.
“In the last 12 months Nigerians have never had it so bad. Most generators have been exhausted. I am not here to challenge anybody but to tell Nigerians that we are in the wrong direction. Nigeria is in turmoil. When you want to deal with corruption, deal with corruption holistically. When I won election they said it was made possible by an Army General, and they sanctioned the General. But in Bayelsa people were mercilessly killed, the General was not sanctioned. Look when I started I never lost any battle. I conquer consensus in my party “.
Governor Fayose also pointed out that the “illegal arrest and detention of some Nigerians by agents of the federal government without evidence of any criminal charges is wrong as it is against the rights of any citizen to be detained for several weeks without any proof” .
Speaking further, the governor predicted that Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) will bounce back in Nigeria come 2019 because of the alleged misrule of the President Muhammadu Buhari led
All Progressives Congress (APC) administration.
“PDP is a party to watch out for again in Nigeria. We are prepared to do the cleansing. We are coming back again. I say we are coming back again. Nigerians are not against PDP. They are against certain individuals who did not do well. You don’t demolish a house because there is a bad tenant inside there. You evict tenant. You refurbish your house. You move in again”.
Governor Fayose said it was glaring that the President Buhari led APC government has failed to deliver on his electoral promises since assumption of office in May last year.
“We are in the wrong direction and journalists should watch all of us and see it as their responsibility to keeping us all on course,” he stated.
Speaking, the Oyo State NUJ Chairman, Comrade Gbenga Opadotun declared that the day was set aside by the UNESCO to identify with the brutality and harassment faced by journalists throughout the world.