Pro National Conference Organisation, PRONACO, Spokesperson and former Ogun State Governorship candidate of the defunct Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) in 2011, Che Olawale Okunniyi has reassured critics of President Muhammadu Buhari commitment to the principle of federal character of the country.
In as statement issued in Lagos on Friday and signed by his media assistant, Oluwabori Obafemi, Okunniyi noted that Mr. President “is too experienced and conscious as a leader to commit the blunder”.
He was reacting to widespread media rumpus and criticisms over the perceived lopsidedness in the federal appointments made by President Muhammadu Buhari so far.
According to Okunniyi, President Muhammdu Buhari as a former leader of the country, is well informed and conscious enough of the delicate and sensitive nature of Nigeria’s diversity to toy with the already troubled stability of the country.
“President Buhari is too experienced and conscious as a leader to commit the blunder of what critics termed as ‘northernisation of the federal government’.
“He is a very meticulous and calculative born again democrat, who understands the political implications of nepotism in an explosive environment like Nigeria.
Okunniyi who was also governorship aspirant of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the build up to 2015 general elections in Ogun state, further reaffirms that things will soon take a nationalistic shape.
“We are already assured by the facts before us that the peoples’ general will definitely nationalise thousands of federal appointments in his custody.
“While dispensing federal entitlements and appointments, Buhari is not likely to discriminate or neglect the Yoruba people or any other tribes in the south; not even those regions where votes may have been obviously rigged against him in the 2015 elections”, Okunniyi assuaged.
Okunniyi stated that the slow pace of the government for now is not a sign of weakness but wise calculation and experience on the part of the President as a lot of things have already been mortgaged between the time Buhari reigned as Head of State and when he became an elected President of the country.
The veteran political activist, therefore, advised that the President really needs to look very well at the extremely delicate situation he now finds himself before leaping.
“The Buhari that I know and worked with as a Yoruba man in CPC; a party perceived essentially as northern platform, was never discriminatory and bias on national matters for once.
“As a matter of fact, he gave those of us from the South more leverage in party decisions. So, cynics and pessimists should just wait and see as time will soon tell”, Okunniyi admonished.
While hinting of an ongoing consultation to convene a major summit of all politicians and leaders of thought in the country to set agenda for the stability and cohesion in the polity before the year runs out, Okunniyi also cautioned critics not to rush or push the President to act with military fiat as the environment in which he is elected to operate now is completely different.
He also stressed that “even as a military leader General Buhari was the most nationalistic and consultative of all other military rulers in the past and that is why some of us were proud to associate with The Buhari Organisation in 2007.”
Okunniyi however concluded by saying, “If Nigerians can do a careful study of the three months President Buhari has spent on the saddle, they will notice a steady improvement in the economy, foreign reserve and even electricity supply of the country, which is a hallmark of fiscal discipline and good governance. There is indeed no cause for alarm but for hope and patience”