- President Buhari has revealed his assessment of Nigeria's numerous problems, saying they are not caused by religion and ethnicity
- The Nigerian leader said citizens are to be blamed for the nation's problems just as he used his personal experience to substantiate his claim
- Speaking about his efforts to get "justice" at the court after losing presidential elections thrice, the president noted that those who supported him were those from other tribes and religions
A statement released by presidential spokesman Femi Adesina on Wednesday, June 30, indicates that the president said this while receiving members of the Muhammadu Buhari/Osinbajo (MBO) dynamic support group.
Legit.ng gathers that the group had visited the State House to present a compendium of five years achievements of the Buhari-led administration.
President Buhari speaks on legal battles
The president was said to have made references to his “struggles to get justice at the courts” after disputed results of presidential elections in 2003, 2007, and 2011.
He noted that the people who ruled against him were of his own ethnic stock and religious persuasion, while those who stood up for him were of other faiths and ethnicity.
“After my third appearance in the Supreme Court, I came out to speak to those who were present then. I told them that from 2003, I’d spent 30 months in court,” Buhari was quoted as saying.
“The President of the Court of Appeal, the first port of call for representation by presidential candidates then, was my classmate in secondary school in Katsina. We spent six years in the same class, Justice Umaru Abdullahi. My legal head was Chief Mike Ahamba, a Roman Catholic and an Ibo man. When the President of the court decided that we should present our case, my first witness was in the box.
“Ahamba insisted that a letter should be sent to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), to present the register of constituencies in some of the States, to prove that what they announced was falsehood. It was documented."
Continuing, President Buhari recalled how a judge of Igbo extraction stood by him even though he had to issue a minority judgment.
“When they gave judgment, another Ibo man, the late Justice Nsofor, asked for the reaction from INEC to the letter sent to them. They just dismissed it. He then decided to write a minority judgment. That was after 27 months in court.
“We went to the Supreme Court. Who was Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN)? A Hausa-Fulani like me, from Zaria. The members of the panel went in for about 30 minutes, came back to say they were proceeding on break. They went for 3 months. When they came back, it didn’t take them 15 minutes, they dismissed us.
“In 2007, who was the CJN? Kutigi. Again, a Muslim from the North. After 8 months or so, he dismissed the case.
“Again in 2011, because I was so persistent, Musdafa, a Fulani man like me, from Jigawa, neighbor to my state, was CJN. He dismissed my case. I’ve taken you round this to prove that our problem is not ethnicity or religion. It is ourselves.”
I never gave up - President Buhari
The president also noted that despite all the hurdles he encountered, he refused to give up and was focused on recovering his mandate.
President Buhari expressed hope that historians will document his struggles so that future generations would know what he passed through before he became president.
Mixed reactions from Nigerians on social media have trailed the president's statement.
Abu Adam said:
"You are absolutely right, indeed truth is bitter but it's the only medicine."
Oluwatobi Asekun said:
"You are correct Mr President, so many Injustices just like the one we exited Npower volunteers are currently experiencing in the hands of your humanitarian minister."
Abdul Rahman said:
"Mr President, we can't thank you enough. I'm only sorry for the coming generation when there will be no one with your integrity and courage to tell them the truth. History will do you justice.
"Being reasonable becomes treasonable where people are unreasonable.
"Long live our President. We are witnesses that you have dutifully discharged your responsibility. Even Moses as a Prophet couldn't appeal to all the Israelites. The fault was never with Moses."
Isah Abdulahi Baba said:
"Tears drop from eyes, God Almighty will liberate Nigerians from shackles and wickedness of the vested interests who have put us in this mess. Ameen. PMB inshaaAllah your struggles, our struggle and prayers for a better Nigeria will not go in vain."
Okala Samson said:
"A leader that blames its citizen for every problem.
"Toyota has taken their plants to Ghana, he should continue to de-market Nigerians."
Dauda Ferdinand said:
"He kept stressing the Religion and tribe of most of the people he has mentioned. Showing you the direction of how he sees and treat us. Not as one people and citizens."
Buhari’s vision, policies ensuring self-sufficiency in food production
In other news, the APC Legacy Awareness and Campaign (APC-LAC) has declared that President Buhari-led administration is steadily moving Nigeria towards self-sufficiency in food production in a way that has never been witnessed since independence.
The All Progressives Congress (APC) support group said Nigeria’s steady progress in the administration’s efforts at positioning agriculture as the fulcrum of the country’s economic development was commendable.
This was contained in a statement sent to Legit.ng on Wednesday, June 30 by the promoters of the group.