*ATIKU ABUBAKAR ’S CAMPAIGN CLOSING SPEECH*
Why I am contesting for the President of Nigeria?
I will summarize in one sentence: Nigeria made me; Nigeria gave me a name. I was born in Jada village in current Adamawa State. My father was a peasant famer and trader, a father that did not believe in Western education. But the Nigerian state ensured I got an education; the Nigerian state saw me through the University; the Nigerian State provided my first car; the Nigerian state gave me a job in the Customs; the Nigerian people reposed confidence in PDP in 1999 and I became the Vice President of this great nation. The Nigerian nation gave me a name. I am therefore greatly indebted to the Nigerian state and Nigerians. I grew up in Nigeria where there was little crime, where we slept with our doors unlocked, where we left our sales wares by the roadside overnight without fear of theft. I grew up in a Nigeria where any Nigerian could live anywhere in the country and aspire to be the best. I grew up in Nigeria where we had quality education and good health services. I grew up a Nigeria where we valued human life and had values. I grew up in a Nigeria where our women were venerated and were partners in development. I grew up in Nigeria where we held each other accountable.
I grew up in Nigeria where there was food sufficiency. I grew in a Nigeria with the groundnut pyramids in the North; the Cocoa plantations in the West; the flourishing Palm fruits of the East; the Yam pyramids and rice paddies in the middle belt earned us foreign exchange.
I grew up in a Nigeria where shepherds protected the farms of the farmers. I grew up in a Nigeria where we protected our forests. I grew up in a Nigeria where only students who did not pass WAEC would look for scholarships to study abroad. I grew up in a Nigeria where we paid our taxes and government provided services.
I grew up in a Nigeria where the exchange rate was $2 to I Naira. This is the Nigeria of my past and the Nigeria of that I desire to recreate. I want to give current generations of Nigerians a country that they will be proud of and pass onto future generations.
When PDP lost elections in 2015; Nigeria had a GDP of $503bnp; was the fastest growing economy in Africa and 6th worldwide. Barely 4 years later through mismanagement of resources by APC, Nigeria has a GDP at $370.89 bnp, is the 17th Economy in Africa, 129th Worldwide. Nigeria has become the poverty capital of the world competing with countries like Haiti.
Under the PDP government, Nigerian Diasporas were returning home in droves with resources to contribute to the development of our country. 4 years under APC, Nigerians are being sold as slaves in open Markets in North Africa; our daughters are being trafficked as sex slaves to all cities in Europe.
There was insecurity in this country 4 years ago, but this was mainly localized in three main states; the PDP under very difficult circumstances tried to defeat Boko Haram, maybe we could have done more; but at least the insecurity was contained; today the Nigerian police have declared 15 states high security risks. Our gallant soldiers that have won many international accolades for restoring peace in countries far from home are now slaughtered in our back yards.
By Transparency International ratings, the corruption index of Nigeria has increased by 23% since 2015. For the first time in the history of this country, we have seen nepotism at the highest level in governance. In the last few days, we have witnessed the highest level of executive lawlessness in our nation with the President calling for extra-judicial killing of Nigerians. I call on every Nigerian that means well for this country to join hands with PDP and me so that we can salvage this Country and reposition on the part of development. By the grace of God I am 72 years now; if God is more gracious to me and grants me to live to a 100, I have only 28 years more to live.
In my 72 years on earth, God and the Nigeria have been good to me. My commitment is to reposition and develop this country so that it can provide for this generation and future generations of Nigerians and stand proud in the comity of nations. Every child in Nigeria should be given the same opportunities that this nation gave to a child of a peasant farmer for Jada Village.
That is why I stand before you asking you to vote me as the President of this great nation. Together we can do this. Together we can rebuild Nigeria. Together we can build a better Nigeria today for our children and future generations of Nigeria. Together we can make Nigeria rise again like the Phoenix and stand proud in the comity of nations.
COME LETS WORK TOGETHER AND REBUILD NIGERIA.
EVERY NIGERIAN SHOULD HOLD PDP AND ME ACCOUNTABLE.
*“I belong to all Nigerians and every Nigerian should hold me accountable”.* *….. Atiku Abubakar.*