By Chesa Chesa
Former Lagos State governor and chieftain of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, has added his voice the purported Third Term agenda of President Muhammadu Buhari, saying that such plan cannot be associated with the Buhari he knows.
Tinubu, who spoke with journalists shortly after he met with the President behind closed doors at the Aso Rock Villa, also said that in any case, it was even too early to be discussing 2023 succession politics or the issue of which zone should get the slot.
He explained that this was why the President’s New Year message to Nigerians in which he reiterated his decision to stand down after two terms in 2023, “resonated very well”.
Tinubu pointed out that Buhari had severally showed his ability to stand by principles and would not violate the Constitution by plotting any agenda to perpetuate himself in office.
“Any reasonable politician, who had worked with President Muhammadu Buhari will know that he will not (tamper with the Constitution). Detractors are always suspicious and will make accusations; but I was in the trench, in the struggle for democracy.
“I was in the trench and in the opposition with Muhammadu Buhari, till the Third Term agenda of a former leader of this country failed. I know he will never.
“He has the courage and the character to refuse such a temptation even if offered to him. I believe in him and I believe Nigerians should also believe in him.
“He doesn’t need to say it to me, I’ll argue it in the corner and everywhere they bring such a thing up. However, it’s very good to hear it from him. I say congratulations to a man of character and integrity.
“The challenge of turning the ship of this nation around is a continuum and a continuous effort and that is what we should get ourselves concerned with.
“Yes, politics is intoxicating, it’s flamboyant, it’s interesting, but we cannot continue in perpetuity one after the other, we have to relax, show concern for the people of the country and see to the efforts of the President that will manifest in the new, united and prosperous country. We are still not there”, he stated.
On the general hoopla over 2023 politics, Tinubu, who is touted to be nursing an ambition to succeed Buhari, stressed that the “time is not now. We have just finished one election and Mr. President is busy sorting out the Budget, working for the people of this country.
“Of course, restlessness of politics is going to be there, but any lover of this country will not talk about the succession plan yet. That’s the truth. Concentrate on working for the country, help the President to help the country. There’s nothing more than that.
“We cannot use 365 days in a year and 360 degrees to work on politics; it’s not possible. Anybody talking about that now is just completely restless and not focused on the agenda of nation building and development of our country.”
Concerning the President’s New Year message, Tinubu said that it “resonated very well; he showed concern about security and the understanding that the economy is still a challenge, but it’s a work in progress. You’ll have to continue to work on it and make it better for the common man.”