20171130

"Nigerians Will See How Popular President Buhari Is In 2019"

Alhaji Nasiru Haladu Danu, Dan Amana Dutse of the Dutse Emirate in Jigawa State is the Chairman Non-NWC members of the ruling APC. A staunch loyalist of President Buhari, he spoke with Temidayo Akinsuyi of Independent on the efforts by the president to deliver on his campaign promises and the talks about the 2019 presidential election. Excerpts:

The president based his administration on tackling insecurity, corruption and revamping the economy. How do you think he has fared in these three areas? 
On security, I will score the president 75 percent. I will also give him 70 percent on the management of the economy. I am sure that by June 2018, we will be talking by 80 percent. On the fight against corruption, I will score him 75 percent.

These are excellent grades, what are your reasons for scoring the president so high? 
Number one is the fight against corruption. Two years ago in this country, corruption in the corporate world and among government officials is so brazen and done with impunity. It is like entering your office in the morning and you see corruption sitting on the table. But right now under the Buhari administration, it has run under the table. In some offices where you have rugs, it has run under those rugs. Some people owing to this administration’s zero tolerance for corruption have even locked it in the safe. So, we hope that in the next one year, we will achieve 80 to 90 percent success in the fight against corruption. I don’t believe in propaganda, I am a realist and that is why I said we have achieved 75 percent success. By the first quarter of next year, I believe we should be talking about 80 to 90 percent. Not only that, we have seen what the anti-corruption agencies have been able to do when it comes to the issue of prosecution. So far, so good, the cooperation from the judiciary is coming but when you look at the most recent cases of corruption, especially the ones involving Sambo Dasuki and Diezani Alison-Madueke, I think the federal government is doing very well in handling these cases. Also, if you look at what the EFCC has been able to recover so far, I believe it is commendable and I believe the president has done very well in the fight against corruption.

How popular is President Buhari now compared to 2015. Do you think his popularity has waned or he has gained more supporters? 
I don’t think President Buhari has issues with popularity. As a chieftain of the party, our main focus is to see how he can deliver on the promises he made to Nigerians during the electioneering campaign in 2015. When the election comes in 2019, that is when you will know how popular the president is. I don’t believe in social media popularity, I like facing reality. If he decides to run in 2019, we will know whether he still popular among Nigerians or not. But I think he is getting more support all over the country. He has demonstrated high level of capacity and he has done very well.

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