- Category: Politics
- Published on Friday, 10 September 2010 10:40
- Written by The Nation
- Hits: 2313
LABOUR Party (LP) presidential aspirant Bashorun Dele Momodu Thursday advised President Goodluck Jonathan not to run in next year’s election in the national interest.
He said having achieved power and fame through the grace of God, he should work hard to erect a lasting legacy.
The publisher-turned politician emphasised that the only legacy the President can bequeath to Nigeria is a free, fair and credible election, adding that this can only be possible, if he declines to participate in the contest as a candidate.
Momodu, publisher of the frontline celebrity magazine, Ovation maintained that it would be strange for a sitting President to lose an election in Africa.
His words: "What I expect Dr Jonathan to do for us is to conduct a good election. You cannot do that as a contestant. It is unAfrican. If the President cannot give us free and fair elections, we should not waste billions of naira on the exercise."
The politician advised Chairman of the Independent Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof Attahiru Jega not to allow the 2011 polls to terminate his career in public life, adding that he must keep his integrity intact as an activist-scholar and conscience of the nation.
Momodu said, if elected President, he would set up a government of National Unity, to tap the ideas of many good people to fuel the fire of development.
The presidential aspirant, visited the Lagos Head Office of Vintage Press Limited, publishers of The Nation.
He was received by the General Manager, Training and Development, Mr Soji Omotunde, who was accompanied by senior editors.
The presidential aspirant, who described himself as an aspirant without a baggage asked Nigerians to reject the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) at the polls, adding that ‘PDP has failed and it must face disgrace’.
Painting an awful picture of socio-economic and political situation in the country, Momodu said the ruling party has failed to reposition the country and fix its decayed infrastructure.
Momodu expressed regret that, in the Southwest where the party controls four states, there are no good roads.
Giving an insight into his mission in politics, he said: "The last hope of the common man is the Labour Party. I want to return power to the ordinary people of Nigeria. We must clear up the mess in Nigeria’.
He lamented that the money bags were buying up the political parties and candidates , saying that the trend is frightening.
Momodu said that he would run a youth-based campaign, thereby injecting freshness into politics.
"We intend to run a youth-based campaign. It will be naïve to think that one can take on the political machinery of the PDP and other political parties alone. I don’t have a godfather, but I have God the father. For anybody to confront PDP, he must learn how Chief Moshood Abiola did it and lost it in this country of mafiadom where election is a matter of life and death.
"I have done a research and what gives me confidence is that less than 20 per cent of Nigerians vote. Less than 10 per cent belongs to political parties. How can 80 per cent of the people allow less than 20 per cent to control their destiny?".
Momodu urged journalists not to belittle the members of their profession vying for elections, recalling that the founding fathers of the country, including the late Chief Obafemi Awolowo, Dr Nnamidi Azikiwe and Chief Anthony Enahoro, were journalists before becoming statesmen.
He said it was wrong for journalists to underrate media men in politics, while they promote the cause of men in other walks of life.
Momodu also rejected the notion that he entered the race to bargain for a ministerial appointment. He said, if he had wanted to become a minister, he would have joined the PDP where political positions are shared.
He said he was bothered by the 12th generation of unemployed graduates in Nigeria.