Jonathan’s Administration Introduced Religious Sentiments And Tribalism – Wamakko | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Jonathan’s Administration Introduced Religious Sentiments And Tribalism – Wamakko

Posted: Jul 28, 2015 at 12:58 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

Aliyu Magatakarda  Wammako  was the immediate past governor of Sokoto State and now lawmaker representing  Sokoto Central Senatorial District in the National  Assembly .  In this interview with ANTHONIA DURU, he spoke on his experience as governor, the Buhari administration and expectation as a lawmaker. Excerpts: 

You were one of the arrowheads who rigorously campaigned during the electioneering campaign for change. Are you now fulfilled that this wish has come to pass?

Governor Aliyu Wamakko

Governor Aliyu Wamakko

I feel fulfilled in the sense that we acted in accordance to the yearnings of Nigerians because then, things were not going well in the country and the country was drifting. There were so many elements of bad governance and many of us were not feeling comfortable with all these. We worked for change and thank God the change we worked for is now with us. Things are changing since President Buhari came on board because he has renewed our hope that Nigeria will be great again through some of his acts. We now have a new government and we are controlling majority of states in Nigeria. This automatically means that we have the opportunity to effect the change.  There is no doubt about the fact that we will witness positive change now that President Buhari is at the helm of affairs. He will take his time to do things well, our country requires good and transparent government and we require a diverse economy, not the mono-economy we have now. We need to provide for our teeming youths all over the country. He is taking his time to study the diverse demands and interest of our country. We need to address all sectors of our economy and make them all more functional. The past administration brought back to our mind issues of tribalism and religion sentiments in our body politics. We are a nation that God loves so much. Our diversity which ought to be our strength then became our weakness. Before the past administration, Nigerians don’t really care about ethnicity or religion but these resurrected during the last administration. It brought about hatred and distrust among Nigerians and these are not good enough for the development of our country. The good news is that the change Nigerians were yearning for will soon become a reality.


Many Nigerians are actually running out of patience as they expect the president to fulfill his campaign promises without further delay. What is your take on that?

The problem is that our people are not just patient. Buhari is not a magician and we don’t expect him to perform magic. He has the wherewithal to take this country back to the right track; he will surely fulfill his campaign promises. He need time to study the diverse demand interest of Nigerians. He need to carry the entire country along with him and to ensure that he hit the right number in terms of what to do and how to go about it. During our campaign, we promised transparency and good governance. We need to study those who will work with him as ministers and those who will work with him. He can’t just appoint base on politics. He will look into the antecedent and capability of those he will appoint. He needs to take his time having been there once. He has always lived in Nigeria so he knew everything about Nigeria and he will deliver to Nigerians. We Nigerians are stakeholders and so we must contribute our own quota to ensure that he succeeds. We must support him just as we supported him during the campaigns by doing the right thing. He told us few days ago that he will form his cabinet come September, let us give him time. He loves Nigeria and he will do the right thing. Don’t forget that Buhari met almost an empty treasury. When he came on board many Federal Government agencies were owing salaries and contractors which means there is no money. He must be careful on where to start and how to start. I am sure that is why he is taking his time. Before the end of the year, all those who are truly lovers of change and who believe in true governance will begin to reap dividends of change.


Don’t you think some loyalists and some of those who worked tirelessly for President Buhari’s emergence as the president need to be compensated with appointments?

Appointment should be base on merit so Nigerians who voted for us can benefit immensely. Only qualified persons should be appointed.

Having served for eight years as a governor, what will you say is your greatest achievement having been in government for 44 years?

44 years in government, my greatest achievement which I will always live to cherish is that service has instilled into me the fear of God, I love Nigeria and Nigerians dearly. I carry out whatever assignment comes my way with diligence to the best of my ability. Looking back, I thank God for giving me the wherewithal to carry out everything to the best of my ability. My people are happy with me and I am sure God is happy with me. As a governor, I put five tertiary institutions in place just to allow for progression and empowerment of our youths who are desire to go to higher institutions.  I served my people as a servant and not as a master. Hence, I enjoy their maximum support while in office and even now that I am no longer their governor.


Can you reel out some of your agenda as a lawmaker?

I am very passionate about the security of this country because we need a secured environment so all Nigerians can go about their duties without fear. I will push for economic diversification, because we all rely on oil money which is so bad. Nigeria is so blessed that its economy can be diversified. We have so many solid minerals we can look at. There is agriculture and other things that should be explored; we could have had a better economy than we are having now. Once we diversify our economy, job creation demands will be tackled. Needs for infrastructure will be addressed, just as education will be addressed and many other things you might need to call government a responsible one will be. I am confident that APC as a party with the calibre of people that formed the party have this commitment to ensure there are jobs for Nigerian youths.  There will be  provision of  security for Nigerian people as well as food security for all.