Saturday, January 23

Buhari will destroy Nigeria - Fayose

The Ekiti State governor, Ayodele Fayose, in a “no-holds-barred” interview with Premium Times aired his opinion on the federal government, his impeachment during his first tenure and his opinion of the Buhari administration.

Below are the excerpts from the interview as put together by YNaija: All statements in quote were made by Governor Ayo Fayose.....

That it is easier to blame a previous administration for all the problems your administration encounters. When asked what difference he had made in the lives of the Ekiti people, Gov. Fayose answered:
“You will recall that I am a second term governor and I must have come with some level of experience otherwise we will be in a very serious and a very terrible situation as a government. This is beside the fact that the economy of the state under the last administration was not impressive. The handling of the economy and other things that happened created a lot of challenges for this administration.” 
“We ensured the blockage of all wastages. Even at that, the nose-diving of the allocation that comes to the state is another challenge. Between January to October 2014 when (former governor) Fayemi was here and January to October 2015, we had a shortfall of about N11billion of what accrued to the state within the space of 10 months. That made it uneasy for us to run the government. Within the ambit of this, we need to maintain the payment of salaries. One of the things that can cause the downfall of any government is when you cannot pay the wages of your workers or issues that tend to mortgage the future of workers.”

Despite allegations malfeasance, corruption and mismanagement of funds, Gov. Fayose believes that he runs a very transparent government.
“They know that this government is transparent. I make public announcement. I declare the assets of government. The standing committee of the labour, the NUJ, and all that, come together and I ask them to look into the balance and see how we can pay wages. Actually, if they see that what you earn is not up to what you will pay, they know that it is not the fault of the governor. But what we try to do is to ensure that whatever comes is used judiciously for the benefit of everybody.”

Despite his self-confessed achievements of his first tenure in 2003, Fayose sounds less than optimistic about his present tenure. When asked why he is unable to do what he did in his first tenure now, the governor replied that:

“We are doing our best within available resources. We just dualised Awodele and we are doing many more. But it is more challenging now because of the debt profile of our state. We are going to continue to service it until the year 2036. It is more challenging. They have committed the state so badly. If I come here and tell you that it is not challenging I will be deceiving you. The difference is that we are carrying the people along so they can understand where we have found ourselves. Up till the time the bailout (funds) provided the leeway, it was not easy at all.”

Governor Fayose describes himself as a controversial figure and the longest serving political office holder in Nigeria. When asked about his controversial figure, the Governor replied:
“I am like that. Everybody is peculiar. You become an issue when you are not a conformist. I am a very clear person. The style in Nigeria and the world over is to lie. It is to do a make- belief. It is to deceive the people. It is to promise change, when you know it is only a “one chance” promise. I am not a man like that. I am not a perfect man, but the path of a righteous man is always a challenge.”
“They know that l represent light. Let me explain to you – have you ever seen in Nigeria where any man will leave office in those challenging situations and will come back again, eight years exactly. I was forced out of government at gunpoint under the Obasanjo administration on the 16th of October 2006. I came back on the 16th of October 2014, exactly eight years. Analysts told me that I took oath of office at exactly the same minute.”
“Let me tell you the truth. There is a way truth catches up with people and there is a way posterity judges you right. Posterity is judging me right because I have dominated the politics of Ekiti State in the last 15 years. Nobody can controvert that. The denominator in politics is the people, not propaganda. If the people can say this man come back in a falling state…I am the issue in Ekiti politics and by extension Nigerian politics. I am the longest serving Nigerian governor. I served in the Obasanjo administration. I was in the same tenure with (Bola) Tinubu, with (Adamu) Mu’azu and others. I was in the same administration with former President Goodluck Jonathan and am now in Buhari administration. I am a major force, I am a factor; you cannot ignore me. If you ignore me, it is at your own peril.”

Apparently, Gov. Fayose has a thing for the letter “I” and uses it as much as possible. When asked about how he was forced out of his first administration by Obasanjo, Fayose instead answered an unasked question:
“I don’t want you to ask that question yet. I just want to round this one off. I want you to take note. I am the first Nigerian governor to defeat two incumbent governors at two different attempts, landslide. I did not only defeat them, I defeated them in their homes, in their wives’ bedrooms, in their sitting room, everywhere. They were badly defeated. They have all the forces, they have all the money, and they have the contacts.”
“It shows with all the noise, all the controversies, I am the issue there. I served in the south west 12 years ago, and with all due respect to all my former colleagues, I am still a factor and a force they cannot forget in Nigerian history. All politics are local. Without this fact that I am strong at home, nobody will remember me today. I defeated Adeniyi Adebayo; I defeated Kayode Fayemi and they all came together to face me and by the grace of God, I defeated them. That shows you that this man has a backing beyond normal. Let me tell you – it is not easy.”
“They cannot come out to say why is my “wife” beating me all the time? They can only come out to cover their tracks. They are not on ground here. In Nigerian politics I only say the truth. They took me to EFCC for eight years. I was detained in Ikoyi prison for 45 days. My wife was detained for 33 days and I won all litigations against them. They went to harass my wife at home and I got judgment against them for N10 million.”
“They went to the Court of Appeal, I defeated them. They went to Supreme Court, I defeated them. I am waiting to collect my money from them now. You see you cannot get it more right than I am getting it. Whether you like me or you don’t like me, it is either you like or you hate. I too I don’t like you if you don’t like me. I am not sorry for you. I told Nigerians that they should not vote for Buhari and that Buhari will not do well. My name is Ayo Fayose. He will not do well. The attitude of a man can only be corrected when you are still young. The older you get….”

Fayose is not afraid of President Buhari, who he described as a dictator

“You see, the power of Buhari is not more than to kill somebody. He can send soldiers to you to come and kill you but people will know that the killing is not normal. It must be a high-wired killing. I am not afraid of him. The power of Buhari is not more than you go and lock somebody up. I am not afraid of him. I am not in the calibre of politicians who are saying, ‘ah don’t let me die o! Don’t let my mother die o,! You don’t take the inheritance of your father if you are not sure you are ready to take it. I am not in that category.”
“Most noble men today have gone underground for fear of the unknown. And in times like this, when you train a lion, when you keep a lion in your family house, those of you promoting that lion will end up in his stomach one day. The same thing we were telling Obasanjo that time. We said Obasanjo was a dictator. Obasanjo consumed most of them who were promoting him that time. I have never minced words, before the campaign…I am not a sycophant to say that it was after Buhari became president that I started praising or talking against him.. I started from day one.”

 Fayose is unimpressed with President Buhari’s administration and sees the president as a vindictive leader. When asked about his opinion on the Buhari administration, the Governor stated that:

“I am not impressed. I am not impressed. Buhari administration has shown the hallmark of a very vindictive leader. Let us reflect carefully on Jonathan. A leader needs all the peace to run a country. Part of the hallmark of a good leader is to be able to rally everybody in times like this. Look back. Jonathan was magnanimous.”
“He could have said I am a sitting president and cause the country headache, but he did not do that. He willingly relinquished power because of the overall interest of the country. Instead of Buhari coming…….you begin to vilify everybody. You begin to do factional pursuance of the fight against corruption. It doesn’t work like that. Go and look at Buhari’s antecedent. I stand to be corrected.”
“It doesn’t matter how many people are feeding under him now, I can always tell you that those who are rearing this lion will end up in his stomach. There is nothing new in governance. We were young here before. We were kids, we became boys, we became men and we became average aged men now. We know that the rate at which Buhari is going, he is going to destroy this country”

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