Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari has told Nigerians to count him out of any attempt to seek a third term in office as being speculated.
Buhari, who spoke at the National Executive Council, NEC, of the All Progressives Congress APC, in Abuja on Friday said the Nigerian constitution did not allow him to seek third term and that he had no plan of doing anything like that.
The president stated that such speculations by some Nigerians were untrue as there was no plan for such.
“I’m not going to make the mistake of attempting a third term. Beside the age, I swore by the Holy Book that I will go by the Constitution and the Constitution says only two terms are available. I know that I’m in my last term and I can’t afford to be reckless, I’m not going to ask for anybody’s vote,” he said.
The President urged the NEC members to be conversant with Nigerian Constitution to avoid factors that made the party to loss election in some states.
“I want you to read the constitution. I made sure that when the constitution says the election as we did it in the last time will start in 18 months time or 20 months time. It is going to be followed strictly,” he said.
According to the President, anybody who failed to maintain the respect of his constituents and is thrown out is his problem.
“Like the chairman said, all those who left us to the upper house, none of them was voted by his constituents. You want to take our people for granted but they know what they are doing,” he said.
Buhari also urged the members to ensure that they are respected in their constituencies. “Yesterday at the meeting of the caucus, I made some comments which are still relevant here.
“But to me, the most important is that every member of NEC should reposition him or herself to make sure that he has dominated his constituency politically. The aim is that, as I mentioned yesterday, history will not be fair to us outrightly, if the APC collapses at the end of this term.
“History will be fair to us, if the APC remains strong and not only holds the centre but make gains. People will reflect with nostalgia that once upon a time, the builders of APC made lots of sacrifices, worked very hard. The sacrifices are physical, material and moral to make sure that we maintain the leadership politically.
“This is what we should all aim at and ensure that our constituencies understand us and follow us to this great objective,” he said.
Buhari, who described what happened to the party in Imo, Bauchi, Sokoto, Zamfara as unfortunate, urged the NEC members to discharge their responsibilities in line with the Constitution.
“What happened in imo, Bauchi, Sokoto, Zamfara is really unfortunate. I will like you in your constituencies to make sure that you read the Constitution of the party and understand it, and stick to it. NEC members must make sure that people elected are responsible from polling units to wards, local governments, states in their respective constituencies.
“This is the only way we can make this party survive, this is the only way history will be kind to us that we have led with absolute concern for the country and for the people. If for any other reason, you divide the party, at any constituency and it causes failure, then be prepared that history will not recognise you as a leader at any level at anytime,” he said.
Earlier, the National Chairman of APC, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, who reviewed the party’s performance in the last general elections, attributed its loss to the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in some states to internal crises.
“Mr President, I have chosen to amplify where we lost but we also made some gains that quite understanding.
“I’m sure it is gladdening the heart of every APC member and even APC well wishers that the man who led rebellion against our party, former Senate President that people of Kwara state did not only denied him return to the Senate, they also voted out every element of PDP.
“And today from the governorship, we won, Senate, we won and of course the House of Representatives and State House of Assembly. I think our victory in Kwara for me was most outstanding. I think we now generally refer to Kwara with pride as the ‘Otooge’ revolution.
Present at the meeting were: former interim National Chairman of APC, Chief Bisi Akande; Secretary to Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, Senate President, Ahmed Lawan and Deputy Senate President, Ovie Omo-Agege.
Others were Deputy Speaker, Ahmed Wade, Senate Leader, Abdullahi Yahaya, Deputy Senate Leader, Prof. Ajayi Borrofice, Senate Chief Whip, Orji Uzor Kalu and Deputy Senate Whip, Sabi Abdullahi.
Also in attendance were governors of Nasarawa, Abdullahi Sule, Kaduna, Nasir El-Rufai, Borno, Babagana Zulum, Kogi, Yahaya Bello, Katsina, Aminu Masari, Edo, Godwin Obaseki, Ondo, Rotimi Aksredolu, Osun, Adegboyega Oyetola, Ekiti, Kayode Fayemi, Jigawa, Abubakar Badaru and others.