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Stats: 3,107,886 members, 7,669,167 topics. Date: Thursday, 07 December 2023 at 04:11 AM
|Hold Me Responsible If I Don’t Change Nigeria — Peter Obi by OddsDoc(f): 10:06pm On Jan 07|
THE Presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP), and two-term governor of Anambra State, Mr Peter Obi, recently visited Akwa Ibom State for his campaign. Speaking with newsmen before the campaign rally, he revealed his plans for Nigeria if elected president of Nigeria next month including the development of the Niger Delta region, and making Nigeria as a country to work again. Excerpts:
In 1983 the Senate approved the establishment of Ibaka Deep Seaport here in Akwa Ibom. If you become the next president what is your plan for that project?
We are talking about how do we compete in the world today. You compete by producing something that you export. So we are not doing Akwa Ibom a favour by developing the Deep Seaport, rather Akwa Ibom is offering us a space to develop an export channel which I am going to develop. Akwa Ibom can become a processing center for export. I want to change it as a processing center for export. The reason our currency is collapsing today is the function of our reserve, as we have no reserve. We have a problem because we’re not exporting anything. If you are exporting something, you won’t have dollar problem. Vietnam doesn’t have dollar problem, Malaysia that is less than 50m people does not have dollar problem. In Nigeria everybody is waiting to share money from oil. I will remove sharing formula and replace it with production formula. So we are not going to waste our money.
One of the presidential candidates said if he wins the election he will sell the NNPC. What is your take on that?
That is where we are having problem because we are dependent on oil. Oil is a diminishing asset that’s not giving anybody, anything. Oil contributes less than 10percent of our Gross Domestic Product, GDP, but it contributes about 50percent of federal government revenue which should not be. If we are a productive country, we can earn more money from other areas apart from oil. Akwa Ibom can earn more money from other things but we just believe in consumption and this formula of sharing. We don’t believe in production and that’s why I keep saying that the reason millions of people have been thrown into poverty is that Nigeria is not a producing country. Because we are waiting to share money from oil, we have our people living in poverty, it can’t continue. We have vast uncultivated land in the north and people are looking for oil. If I become president, within the few years I will devote the money from oil in trying to ensure that we clean up, and be able to develop Niger Delta for what they have suffered. Then resources from other places will be used to develop the areas. I am a champion of fiscal federalism so that people can become productive. So, I am not going to sell the NNPC, it is the least of my problems. My problem is to create a future and allow the country to work again. NNPC is not even producing anything today, its not making any profit, it is not contributing anything today.
Power distribution is a major challenge Akwa Ibom is currently facing. How do you intend to address the issue?
In my manifesto I was very clear about the power issue. As at today, our generating capacity is about 12,000Megawatts. We will do everything possible to solve the issue of power. We are going to support existing facilities, increase and decentralize the transmission to ensure that what is being generated is being distributed. Additionally, we will support every other method. In South Africa they are 60milion people and they generate almost 50,000megawatts. And the president in the past few months declared emergency in power and authorised that anybody can generate up to 100megawatts without license. We are over 200million people, we generate only 5,000megawatts, what do you think I will declare in the sector? War.
In 2019 you were running mate to Atiku Abubakar on the platform of the PDP. He is still the presidential candidate of the party for the 2023 election. Why are you not with Atiku to contest for presidency this time around?
I have a background as an Igbo man. In Igbo land if you are learning a business, you stay with your boss and when you finish he will settle you. Now two of you will be doing the same business and be looking for the same customers who will now decide who is the best. The customer may decide to continue to buy from the Oga, or from this new boy, that the product he is selling is better than that of the Oga.
How do feel about the recent comment from your own governor, Professor Charles Soludo that you cannot be the next president?
My state governor is my brother and I wish him well. I want him to do very well. If I care about people’s comments I won’t be here. People have rights to their comments and there is freedom of speech. That’s what we preach. It’s not everybody that’s here that likes me, there are people who don’t want to see me here. If everybody here likes me there is a problem. That’s life. So wherever we find ourselves in life it is only by God’s grace, because He gives it.
Your opponents have said that Labour Party doesn’t have the structure you require to win the 2023 presidential election. How will you respond to that?
You are the structure. The structures they have today are the structures we want to dismantle, the structure of criminality; structure that produced 133 million people living in poverty; the structure that produced 20million out-of-school children, and made Nigeria surpass India in Infant mortality; the structure that destroyed us. We want to destroy that structure. We want to build a better place for our children, a better place for all of us. The driver that brought me here, I asked him, who will you vote for, I want you to be honest? And when he finished telling me I said to him, you are from Akwa Ibom, can you show me one thing the Federal Government has done for the people of Akwa Ibom? That is the structure you are talking about, structure that destroyed the country and threw everybody into poverty. So we want to build a better structure, and the people are the structure. Leadership in Nigeria is a problem, but the worst problem is the people who have refused to say no in the face of bad leadership, who are celebrating the criminality of the country. That is what we want to stop. So you are the structure, I do not need any other structure, if you believe in it we’ll change the country, if you don’t believe in it, one day when they start they will not spare any of you. Today you can’t move around, you are scared, everybody is scared to move around in Nigeria. Is that a structure you want to maintain?
Since you have observed that Akwa Ibom lacks federal presence, if you become the next president, what are you going to do about it?
You can imagine that the next president is your in-law. You can only imagine it, I won’t say more than that. For me I am home here. That is why I asked what did they do for you?
|Re: Hold Me Responsible If I Don’t Change Nigeria — Peter Obi by yarimo(m): 11:14pm On Jan 07|
OBI that can't even managed small Anambra state as governor is here talking rubbish
|Re: Hold Me Responsible If I Don’t Change Nigeria — Peter Obi by Mynd44: 5:31am On Jan 08|
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