The presidential primary election of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has been adjudged as the best in the history of the country.
For Hon. Bisi Yusuf, who is representing Alimosho Constituency 1 in the Lagos State House of Assembly, the primary election, just like others in the party, according to him, was free and fair. He emphasized that the APC is setting the pace for democracy in Nigeria.
He speaks on some other issues in this interview.
How would you describe the Presidential Primaries of your party, the All Progressives Congress (APC)
The primary is a new phenomenon that has never been known to Africa, you could only see this kind of primary in a country like the United States of America. That day, I was watching as if I was participating in a primary that would produce President Barack Obama of the United States of America. The conduct of the election was perfect, security, and supporters were nice and excellent, the media coverage is unparalleled. The conduct of the aspirants could be linked to Abraham Lincoln and others, and because of this, everybody wants to identify with the APC. The choosing of the vice-presidential candidate is being delayed because everybody is interested in the party now. Our leaders are meticulous, calculative, pro-active, they are mathematicians and they are phenomenon in their own right. People are waiting to know who is going to be the vice-presidential candidate of the party. Nigerians are waiting for the vice-president of Nigeria and you don’t expect our leaders to make mistakes. Talk of Governor Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State, Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola of Lagos, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, and Professor Yemi Osibajo, all these people are qualified. Our leaders have even said that the vice-presidential candidate would emerge democratically. This is another plus for our party, so there would be a lot of consultations unlike in a party, where they printed only one form.
There were different kinds of aspirants across board for all the primary elections in the party, do you think the aspirants that lost would cross to other parties?
That is a brilliant question, let me use my own as an example. We had seven aspirants in my constituent during the primary election in Alimosho Constituency 1. Some of them later stepped down honourably, I want to thank them for that gesture. I have the highest votes in Nigeria for house of assembly elections, I had 695 votes. Three of the aspirants and some others stepped down and one of them has even done an intimidating poster for me. Those are the kinds of people that we have in APC, matured people, people who place the interest of the nation above their own interest, who are result-oriented. They are not just contesting for contesting sake; they want to offer themselves to serve their fatherland. Look at the primary election for the governorship election in Lagos State, there were about 12 aspirants in the election. On the second day of the election, they all agreed with the result of the primary. From Sokoto State to Rivers and across the states in Nigeria, you would never see anybody taking anyone to court in APC on the primary elections. That means the maturity and the democratic tendency we are waiting for in Nigeria are already here with us. Once the head is good, all other parts of the body would be good. When the head is functioning well, all other parts would be okay. When Gen. Muhammadu Buhari emerged as the Presidential candidate of the APC, you could see the ovation; every other aspirant embraced him and see the way they spoke at the convention. All of the aspirants are qualified to rule this country; there is none of them that is not better than President Goodluck Jonathan. See their speeches at the primary.
What lessons do you think the country has to learn from the primary elections of the APC?
They should come to us for consultation, they can employ Dr. Kayode Fayemi as a consultant.
Recently, Dr, Doyin Okupe compared President Goodluck Jonathan to the Lord Jesus Christ in an interview on the television, what do you have to say to that?
Even Satan was trying to lecture Jesus Christ after he fasted for 40 days and 40 nights. Comparing a man that has recorded the highest deaths to a holy person is very bad. Dr. Doyin Okupe does not know what he is saying. Greed is beclouding his sense of reasoning. These people are masters in their own game. They want to take the highest states in Nigeria and the man they are dealing with, they know his mind, they tell him what he wants to hear. They would destroy him be comparing him to Jesus Christ. It is the highest indecent statement anybody can make in the world.
Some people have the fear that the 2015 elections could lead to the disintegration of the country?
The election would come and go and Nigeria would remain, the country is bigger than individuals. Look at the statement of Asari Dokubo, has anybody not been defeated in the country before. The late Chief Obafemi Awolowo lost an election and Nigeria remains intact, the military came, we are still intact. The late president Umar Musa Yar’Adua died and Nigeria still remains, the best person would come out. Former president Olusegun Obasanjo was planning a third term in office, he did not succeed, yet Nigeria remains the same. What would have made the country to dis-integrate was the June 12, 1993 Presidential election, which was presumably won by the late Chief MKO Abiola, yet Nigeria did not dis-integrate, we still managed ourselves. Talking about military incursion, that one would not even come, the era of military intervention has gone forever. Political education is going on and the social media are helping in this area. It would come and go and the country would remain. It is only when the cabal wants to play on the intelligence of the people that they say such things. Hunger knows no bounds, so what Nigerians need are people that can deliver us from those who are in the corridors of power now. We love this country, it would not break up.