By Mike Odiakose
Ahead of the 2019 election, President Muhammadu Buhari’s support base suffered a devastating blow as Northern Elders Forum, NEF, has rejected his candidacy, saying he has failed the region and ‘Nigerians in general.
In a statement by Professor Ango Abdullah, the Convener of the Northern Elders’ Forum, they said they will be endorsing another presidential candidate from the North as President Buhari failed to deliver on the two conditions they gave him in 2015.
“Two of the conditions we gave Buhari upon his assumption of office were that he should take concrete steps to address the abject poverty and underdevelopment in the North and he has woefully failed to marginally address any of them.
“Assuming that things are working in the North or in Nigeria as a whole, we would have taken a different position but everyone can see that things are not working under this government. Perhaps, as a prelude to where this government has taken this country, Buhari wasted six months before being able to set up his cabinet.
“And when he eventually formed the cabinet, he brought in persons who had not added any value to governance and his wife has vindicated us on this.
“As things stand today, we in the NEF do not believe that Nigeria’s cause will be helped by Buhari’s re-election in 2019. That is why we have decided to pick one of the other presidential candidates from the North for next year’s contest.”
NEF added that the position of Buhari’s wife on the performance of her husband gave them added reason why they are shopping for another candidate.
“It would be futile for anyone to blame anybody for the decision of the NEF against Buhari because his own wife has openly alluded to our position that some persons, who do not have the interest of Nigeria at heart, are running the Buhari administration without adding real value to the governance of Nigeria”.