Opinion

Bunmi Awoyemi: Rabiu Kwankwaso Is A Better Choice For APC Than General Muhammadu Buhari

I have seen die hard supporters of General Muhammadu Buhari (GMB) insinuating that GMB would garner more votes than Rabiu Kwankwaso in a Presidential contest against incumbent Goodluck Ebele Jonathan! I beg to disagree with them.

I have made it clear that even though I may have some reservations about GMB, if he emerges as the APC Presidential flag bearer, I will vote for him because of the depth and breadth of the corrupt practices of the current administration which needs to be tackled so that the stolen resources of Nigeria can be returned to the treasury.

Having said that the clear cut achievements of Rabiu Kwankwaso makes him stand out among his peers. I will repost my note in these achievements at the end of this update.

Buhari has lost 3 times against the PDP. That means they have a playbook that is deployed each time he runs for the office of President and it works against him. I would have preferred a measured approach by the supporters of GMB. This desperate attempt to crown him the candidate of the APC even before a party primary or a conclusion of a consensus process is bound to back fire if at the end of the day he ends up not winning the ticket. This “Buhari or nothing” approach of his supporters was what led to the electoral violence that trailed his loss at the 2011 Presidential polls.

Now the same pattern is beginning to emerge. The worst case scenario which is likely to play out if Buhari fails to get the APC ticket is that his supporters will in protest against the APC for not handing GMB the ticket on a platter of gold refuse to back whoever emerges. GMB needs to call his supports to order.

A lot of them including some journalists sympathetic to some entrenched APC leaders who want to impose Buhari on a party of 32m members have erroneously alleged that one of the reasons people prefer Rabiu Kwankwaso to Buhari is age. They also allege that Rabiu Kwankwaso’s democratic credentials has been somewhat soiled because he used to be a PDP member.

My response is as follows:

1. Buhari being a coupist who planned and executed a coup against a democratically elected government cannot be said to possess better democratic credentials than Rabiu Kwankwaso who has been a democrat for decades from when he cut his teeth as a student union leader in his college days at the Kaduna Polytechnic to when he was in the House of Representatives as the Deputy Speaker in the early 90s and later contested and won the Kano state governorship election in 1999.

When he failed to win reelection in 2003 he was appointed Minister of Defence in the OBJ regime and during his time all attempts at insurgency were check mated and the defense budget was executed judiciously and meticulously. There was nothing like the armed forces not being properly equipped even though the defense budget was less than 20% of what the Goodluck Jonathan adminstration has been budgeting for defense in the last 4 years.

During the Yar Ardua administraton he was appointed a member of the NDDC Board and served with dedication.

Rabiu Kwankwaso subjected himself to a civilian government and served under it while GMB overthrew a democratically elected government and sent a lot of innocent Governors to their early grave because of harsh prison conditions.

I need no delve into the undemocratic credentials of GMB because that will undermine our collective resolve as a nation to send Goodluck Jonathan back to his village in 2015, because no matter how imperfect GMB’s record is, when you juxtapose it with that of the once shoeless and now clueless corrupt President of Nigeria he is as squeaky clean as a mother Theresa.
2. On the age issue:I agree that if he is fit and capable age should not be a barrier to Buhari ascending to the office of President of Nigeria. The truth is that the millions of Nigerians from the South and the North who are already mobilizing massively for Rabiu Kwankwaso are doing so because of his stellar report card after just 3 years in office as Governor of the most populous state in Nigeria, Kano state.

Click or copy and paste the youtube video below to learn more about his score card and read the Note that I wrote a few days ago that attempts to capture some but not all his achievements in the last 3 years of his administration in Kano state!

Vote in Engr.(Dr.) Rabiu Kwankwaso, the Awolowo and Aminu Kano of the 21st Century as Nigeria’s next President

This document contains a summary of some of the achievements of Engr(Dr.) Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso as the executive Governor of Kano state and the Awolowo and Aminu Kano of the 21st century. He is a strong believer in the ideology of these two great nationalists and has worked tirelessly day and night to implement what these two great Nigerians believed in. He is their student and he has not done badly in trying to live up to their ideals. If elected as Nigeria’s next President, rest assured that these achievements will be replicated across Nigeria. He needs your vote at the APC primaries and if he emerges as the Presidential candidate of the APC, he needs your vote to become the next President of Nigeria.

– He is prudent with resources

– Visionary leader

-Man of integrity

-Man of the people

-Detribalised leader

– He is number 1 in education among the Governors in Nigeria- free education at all levels including university education. –

-Provided scholarships to more than 2500 Kano indigenes for their university education.

-Transparent leadership

-Training 100 Kano graduates sponsored to become pilots.

-300 graduates sponsored to different areas of specialization in medicine

-100 graduates sponsored for their Masters’ degree in Pharmacy.

-24 graduates sponsored for their Masters’ degree in various fields of Engineering

-Pays the school fees (N17m per year) of all the Kano law graduates at the Nigerian law schools.

-Eliminated begging by paying them N10,000 per month until they graduate from skills acquisition program and pick up seed grants to start their own businesses.

-Abolished office of 1st Lady -Abolished security vote that runs into billions of naira and is a corruption conduit

-Stopped sponsoring religious pilgrimages thereby saving billions.

-Spends 65-70% of annual budget on capital projects that benefits the people directly.
– Stopped ram buying for civil servants and saved billions of naira from this and other areas of waste which has been channeled into making education free from Primary school to University level.

– Invested N1.1b in the purchase of 250 brand new cars and handed it over to unemployed graduates for them to run a luxury taxi business.

-Met empty treasury, a debt burden of N77 billion and an additional $203 million in foreign loans on assumption of office, he has through prudent management of resources put Kano State on the path of accelerated development.

-800 classrooms and 400 offices have been constructed in the primary schools across the state

-Acquired 65 buses from the Urban Development Bank under the Federal Mass Transit Programme for transporting students to school and 20 high capacity buses which were distributed to public schools in the state under Kwankwasiyya Girl Child Initiative and additional 30 buses for the same purpose.

-Free meals during school hours, free uniforms and free books have encouraged children of the less privileged in the state to go to school. “A child whose parents cannot give him three square meals can now go to school because he knows that there would be food for him to eat in school.

-In order to provide access roads for the rural communities, started the construction of a five- kilometre road in the headquarters of each of the 44 local government areas of the state.

-Numerous road and flyover projects across the entire state that makes Kano state look like one giant construction site.

– Over 2000 health technology graduates and pharmacists have been trained & given free N50,000 & non interest loan of N100,000 to operate pharmacies uder the LAFIYA JARI PROG.

-Water supply to the people of Kano state rose from the meagre 40 million litres per day that was being pumped into the city to 200 million litres per day.

-Upgrade and proper equipping of primary health care centers and government hospitals across Kano state.

– he built three new cities namely: kwankwasiyya city, Amana city, and Bandarawo citiy.

-1700 youths trained in the use of modern farm equipment and each mobilized with the sum of N140k each.

-To ensure transparency no commissioner can approve an amount above N200k for any project, if above N200k it must be approved by the state executive council.

-All medical students who are Kano indigenes get a level 9 civil service level salary per month from their 1st year of medical school to their housemanship.

-Built two universities and several academic institutions within three years Free education at all levels in Kano State.

-Trained 1120 unemployed youths as vulcanizers and mechanics and gave each of them between N53k and N63k and a tool box and machines to set up their own businesses.

-Spends N3.3b annually to feed primary and secondary school students!

– creating construction, developing and funding of Kano University of Science and Technology with 7 faculties and 29 departments

– Northwest University with 4 faculties and 16 departments

– School of Nursing and midwifery madobi

– School of nursing Gezawa

– School of health Technology Bebeji

– School of Informatics Studies Kura

-Awarding degree program at College of Education Kano

-NCE and degree program at School of Legal Studies Kano

-Sponsoring 501, 502 and 503 students abroad on scholarship

-Skills Acquisition Schools in all 44 LGAs of the state

– Over 27 crafts, technical, security, sport and entrepreneurial schools were built all over the state.

– Looking at this capital expenditure with the little IGR of the state and transformation that we have seen in all sectors of the Kano economy, especially transportation (road construction) education and health sectors it is clear that we have in Engr (Dr.) Rabiu Kwankwaso a leader that can govern Nigeria effectively.

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Written by Bunmi Awoyemi, Ph.D.

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