Former chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Mallam Nuhu Ribadu stated on Thursday in Abuja that his interest in the 2011 presidential election was informed by his firm belief that there was the urgent need to remake the country for the younger generations.
The anti-graft crusader said, he would soon declare publicly his presidential bid.
According to him, “I am still consulting but it is going to be very soon because there is no time. It is going to be very, very soon that we are going to make a decision on that. Like I said, my belief is that the possibility of all of us coming together must be exhausted full blast to see the chance for us to move to the way in which we will give our country a platform that is going to be national.”
Ribadu said he has a dream of a new Nigeria and a strategy to improve the socio-political and economic wellbeing of the country.
He added: “I have a dream of a new Nigeria ; I have a dream of a changed Nigeria . I dream of a possibility of a new chapter for the country. And those who are in charge somehow certainly need to give chance for the country to move forward.”
Asked if, as a former EFCC chairman, those corrupt elements he fought would not fight him back now and prevent him from becoming the president, Ribadu said, “I have always been fighter all my life. When I was in the Nigeria police force, I fought armed robbers, I survived. I fought gangsters, I fought 419 fraudsters, big-time corrupt people and I survived. I am still standing as Nuhu Ribadu; I believe I will also survive this.”
On what qualifies him for the office of president, the former EFCC boss stated: “I have served the nation for 25 years, I have given it to the nation. I had the chance to set up an agency (EFCC); I ran it for five years. I was in the economic team during former President Olusegun Obasanjo. I was a federal prosecutor, probably more than any other person in that capacity. I was a police officer, a community worker, I put all my life into public service at the federal government level. It is only natural for you to really put that into where the experience can best count.”
Ribadu said he would soon come out with his programme and policy. “It is not something you can give in one word. I want to put a full stop to corruption finally. I want to ensure, from now on, that Nigerians are going to enjoy free and fair education. I want to ensure that we will have good and decent hospitals. We will have hospitals, we don’t have to go out of the country and spend our money to build others like India , Egypt and Ghana ,” he said.
He continued: “Time has come for us to build our own. I want to make sure that the money that goes out as school fees that we go to pay in the UK , Ghana , and everywhere is going to stop immediately. We must have the schools that will give us the best in our own country. I want to see a Nigeria that will give jobs to its young ones. I want to see a Nigeria that probably will industrialise.
“I want to see a Nigeria that will give justice to its own people justice across; justice that can give a chance to us to have peace and stability, for us to grow. I want to see the possibility of giving our country the opportunity of equal treatment, fairness, and respect to people. I want to see if it is possible for us to give a leadership that can listen; leadership that can take advice; leadership that is going to be collective.
“In other words, I want a new Nigeria . A new Nigeria is possible and there is no time to waste at all. Like I said the detailed programmes will come out. We are going to be precise and give very clear programmes and policies and how to go about it.”
Ribadu, who was forced into exile during late President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua government for over two years, he called for free, fair and credible elections in 2011.
Image via Chidi Opara reports
Ayodele Samuel is a Journalist at Leadership Newspapers