Sometimes politicians forget that they have said several months or even years ago. But media remembers everything. Do you recall these quotations of two potential ‘duellists’: President Goodluck Jonathan and General Muhammadu Buhari (rtd)?
1. On elections 2015:
“My dear, I do not like to talk about it. I’m not interested in 2015 because you and I do not know whether we will reach 2015. We do not know who will be alive to witness 2015. The truth is, 2015 is really not my business and it is politically irresponsible for people to be talking about 2015,” Goodluck Jonathan, January 2013, about his participation in 2015 elections.
“This campaign is the third and last one for me. I will not offer myself again for election into the office of president,” Gen. Buhari promised that the 2011 presidential contest would be his last one. On October 15, 2014 he declared that he would run for presidency in 2015 .
2. On Boko Haram:
“No, no, no!! Boko Haram is not as a result of misrule; definitely not. Sometimes people say it is as a result of poverty; definitely not. Boko Haram is a local terror group,” President Goodluck Jonathan said in an interview with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour, 2013.
Muhammadu Buhari, on Wednesday, October 15, called the Boko Haram sect “Godless people, marauding murderers in communities and kidnappers”.
3. On corruption:
“Over 70% of what are called corruption (cases), even by EFCC (Economic and Financial Crimes Commission) and other anti-corruption agencies, is not corruption, but common stealing,” Goodluck Jonathan’s 7th media chat, May 2014.
“We will stop corruption and make the ordinary people, the weak and the vulnerable our top priority,” Gen. Buhari said during his declarationof participating in the 2015 elections.
4. On each other:
“We have decided to rescue Nigeria from the Poverty Development Party,” and“PDP has done a lot of damage to our country, this time around we will deal with them,” Buhari’s supporter, ex House of Reps Member Dino Melaye stated during All Progressives Congress (APC) rally and Buhari’s declaration in Abuja on October 15, 2014.
The response by Jonathan’s media aide, Dr. Reuben Abati, came almost immediately. President Jonathan’s media aide described Buhari’s claims made in the declaration speech as “reckless, baseless, and unsupportable”. Dr Abati said Buhari’s statements reflect the bad nature of the political opposition in Nigeria.
Like Boko Haram, Muhammadu Buhari clearly challenged Muslims and the government to implement the Sharia law on full scale. In a speech, which he delivered at a seminar organized by the Supreme Council of Sharia in Nigeria, August 2001. Here is an excerpt:
“I will continue to show openly and inside me the total commitment to the Sharia movement that is sweeping all over Nigeria… God willing, we will not stop the agitation for the total implementation of the Sharia in the country”.
“Whether we are Muslims or Christians; rich or poor; from the north or the south; east or west; regardless of our political affiliations. This is a time to pull together”, Goodluck Jonathan’s speech on the 53rd anniversary of the country’s independence.