Despite persistent rumors that he may seek another term, President Muhammadu Buhari Friday said he has no intention to seek a third term, saying the Nigerian constitution permits a maximum of two terms for governors and president.
For him to do that, the constitution will need to be amended. But Buhari, who once led Nigeria as a military head of state, ultimately ruled that out on Friday evening. “I said you should read the Constitution because I am not going to make the mistake of attempting a third-term; besides age factor, 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,” Buhari said at the meeting of the National Executive Council (NEC) of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC). The president urged the NEC members to be conversant with Nigerian constitution to avoid factors that made the party to lose election in some states.
Buhari also urged the members to ensure that they were 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 remain 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 described what happened to the APC in Imo, Bauchi State, Sokoto and Zamfara States as unfortunate. He urged the NEC members to discharge their responsibilities in line with the constitution.
“NEC members must make sure that people elected are responsible from polling units to wards, local governments and states in their constituencies. “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, APC National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole said:”I have chosen to amplify where we lost but we also made some gains that are quite understanding. “I think our victory in Kwara for me was most outstanding; 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, among others.