The Niger State Governor Mu’azu Babangida Aliyu has described the All Progressives Congress (APC) as the party needed to sanitise Nigeria’s politics.
Gov. Aliyu also said the struggle in the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) being spearheaded by the Group of seven governors (G-7) is a revolution to cleanse the party and the national polity. Aliyu is the group’s leader.
Aliyu spoke yesterday when he hosted leaders of the APC led by its Interim National Chairman, Bisi Akande, who were in Minna to woo Aliyu to APC.
Aliyu said: “I said it that the coming together of the ACN, ANPP and CPC brought radicalism closer. The emergence of APC is a harbinger for a proper revolution. A revolution that will now sanitise the politics of Nigeria.”
He warned the ruling PDP to be “cautious, tread softly and be tolerant” with opposition parties, predicting that “the ruling party today may be in opposition tomorrow”.
The G7 leader said the struggle in the ruling party was their own contribution to santise the party. “What is happening in our party, PDP, is the revolution that is catching up with the country. Many see it as an internal struggle, but it is a move to see that the party is cleansed,” he said.
Commending the foresight of the leaders of APC in coming together, Aliyu said the party’s emergence on the political landscape would bring the best out of the 2015 elections as Nigerians would have the opportunity to have two major parties to seek for their favour”.
Though he was not categorical about the request of the APC leaders, Aliyu said: “We have declared ceasefire because we are negotiating. After that, you can come with a blast. If we resolve, we will still be friends and if we don’t resolve, you will have as many of us as possible. As a group, we the G7 are people who keep to agreement.”
He then advised that the membership drive should not be limited to the G7 governors alone. “Don’t just visit the G7 governors alone, visit all governors and let us see who will not receive you. If other parties see this move as a good way, let them do it,” Aliyu told the APC chiefs.
Akande said they were in the state to solidarise with Aliyu in the face of persecution he along with the G7 governors were receiving from the ruling party and to ask him and the people of the state to join the APC.
APC National Leader Tinubu said the political barometer and radar had shown that the time for change in the country was ripe.
According to him, Nigeria needs “changes that take the welfare of the people as a cornerstone of its economic policies”. “Change that is focused on quality of life of our men and women. Changes that give priortity to economic priorities and take poverty off the land and put our youth to work”.
He expressed optimism that the party’s drive would yield positive results for the country.
On the delegation were General Muhammadu Buhari, former House of Representatives Speaker Aminu Bello Masari, Senate Minority Leader George Akume, former Minister of Foreign Affairs Tom Ikimi, former Minister of Works Hassan Lawal, former Edo State Governor John Odigie-Oyegun, former Minister of Labour Alhaji Gwadabe and Interim National Publicity Secretary Lai Mohammed.