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Saraki discourages youths from contesting in 2023 election, gives reason

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Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, a former President of the Nigerian Senate, has told youths nursing the ambition to run in the 2023 presidential election to shelve the idea.

Saraki said it was already too late for such persons to stand any chance of winning an election in this country, adding that the system is too rigid.

The former Senate President said he would not even want any youth with a sound mind to contest for political offices at this point because they still possess some good values which would be corrupted before they win any election.

“You have to give up some good values that you have to be able to be competitive,” the former Kwara State Governor said at the weekend during an Independence lunch with diverse Nigerian youths in Abuja.

“It is too late to win election. I will be very honest with you. The System is too rigid against you. You are a young guy, you don’t have money or network where are you going to start from?

“I don’t even want you to [contest] because you still have some good values. I don’t want you to be corrupted because for you to win you have to give up some good values that you have to be able to be competitive.

“We don’t want that because it means your generation will be as bad as ours. Let’s keep you where you are for now for those who are not yet corrupted.

“Where I believe you can make a difference which no one can stop you is your a rights to vote. That’s the only role you can play now in reality.

“We should be asking if that is guaranteed. That is what we have been advocating for in the electoral bill and it has worked.

“I think what needs to be done now is that we must participate. Let me explain further, on the day of election, if you look at the line of people that go out to vote… if the people coming out to vote are people we can give 100 naira, the election will not stand. This means we can manipulate. But if the 500 people lining up are people like you election will hold.

“If we say we won’t come out because nothing will change …if we take that attitude, then they will win. Look at all over the world where there is big change, people that made the change are people like you. If you are not registered to vote, nothing will change. It will be who we want to be Governor, Senator that will be.

“If you make up majority of the electorate even if they try to change the result, I know you will not agree because you know your right and the world will stand with you.

“I think the target now should be how to mobilize similar mind to hold their voters card and vote. If that is the kind of voters, then the result will hold. I promise, if those are not the kind of voters, then everyone will try to manipulate the result.

“Until those of you that matter take it upon yourself and ask what kind of Governor, president, Senator you want, nothing can change.

“When you get the right kind of Governor and he knows you have the power to vote him out, you will have the chance to come into government because you would have built a pact.

“The point now is, politician don’t believe you can vote them out. If they believe you can vote them out, they will do the right things.

“Their own view is 9 months to election they will share the money and win election. If they know the vote is not about sharing money they will perform well.

“End SARS did not fail, it showed that the youth can participate and the best form of participation is through voting.

“I think the world is tired of the problem and dangers Nigeria could create. There are six million Nigerians that have the right to be in the UK.

“If Afghanistan was a problem then Nigeria is a bigger problem for the UK. Even for self interest, it is in the best interest for UK to work because of the exodus that will go into those places if it doesn’t.

“The world is with us but we must put in place good governance and the right kind of voters that can do that are people like yourself. Not those who want N5000. If the guy that wants N5000 is more than you, then Nigeria is not going to change and we won’t have the right kind of leaders.”

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No president will say there won’t be banditry next year — Lai Mohammed

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The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed has said that no president will say banditry will next year.

Lai Mohammed said this while responding to a question on whether the current security challenges would end before President Muhammadu Buhari leaves office in 2023.

Responding to the question at a press conference on Wednesday December 15, Lai Mohammed said;

“Nobody, I’m not sure any president will say by next year there will be no banditry. It is just like saying by next year, there will be no thief.

“But what is important is that they should judge us by our achievement. We’ve not thrown our hands in the air. There was a time they asked us to hire mercenaries, but our soldiers are doing their best in these circumstances.”

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Buhari jets out Turkey for summit

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President Muhammadu Buhari will on Thursday leave Abuja for Istanbul, Turkey, to attend the third Turkey-Africa Partnership Summit, hosted by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of the Republic of Turkey.

According to the organisers, the theme of the Summit is ‘‘Enhanced Partnership for Common Development and Prosperity’’ and the agenda includes reviewing the cooperation between African countries and Turkey since the last Summit in 2014.

This was disclosed in a statement by Garba Shehu, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media & Publicity, on Thursday morning.

The third Turkey-Africa Partnership Summit is coming on the heels of President Erdogan’s recent State visit to Nigeria during which several agreements in the fields of energy, defence industry, mining and hydrocarbons were signed to expand existing bilateral ties.

The Turkish leader had during the visit to Nigeria, affirmed his commitment to immediately expand the volume of trade between the two countries to 5 billion dollars and the Nigerian delegation will seize the opportunity of the gathering in Istanbul to enhance cooperation with other partners for more trade and investment opportunities in the country.

It is expected that the Summit would provide guidelines and direction for cooperation with African countries for the next five years.

President Buhari will be accompanied on the trip by his wife, Aisha Buhari; the Ministers of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama; Defence, Maj-Gen. Bashir Magashi (Rtd); FCT, Mohammed Bello; Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire; Agriculture, Mohammed Abubakar; Industry, Trade and Investment, Adeniyi Adebayo; the National Security Adviser, Maj.-Gen. Babagana Monguno (Rtd); and the Director-General of the National Intelligence Agency, Ambassador Ahmed Rufai Abubakar.

The President is expected back in Abuja on Sunday, December 19.

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2023 presidency: I’m not going to turn it down – Tinubu

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The National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, has said he will not turn down the calls of those asking him to contest for president in 2023.

Tinubu stated this after a meeting with leaders of the Northern Alliance Committee in Abuja on Tuesday.

Speaking to journalists after the meeting, the former Governor of Lagos said he would, however, make consultations before officially announcing a decision on the matter.

“I’m not going to turn them down but I will still effectively and widely consult, particularly brainstorm with my friends and find a date to come out openly to tell Nigerians.

“But the president is still in office. I don’t want to distract him from all the challenges that he might face today.

“So, don’t muddle the political water. Consult, make our programme known to the people later,” Tinubu said.

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