President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday while speaking during a live presidential town hall meeting tagged, “The Candidates”, said that the Boko Haram terrorist group is being sponsored by forces outside Nigeria.
Buhari noted that the military needed a lot of money to purchase military equipments to completely wipe out the terrorists.
“We need a lot of money for the military for spare parts, communication gadgets, arms and ammunition. The Boko Haram are certainly supported by forces outside Nigeria,” Buhari said.
Buhari further revealed that he decision to contest in the forthcoming election was based on the support of the National Executive Committee.
“I said it much earlier at the National Executive Committee of our party that if my party recommended me to its executive, I would contest. I did that to save time and wide discussions among members of the party,” he said at the event held at the Ladi Kwali Conference Centre, Sheraton Hotel, Abuja.
Regarding his perceived nepotistic fight against corruption, he said that nobody is being pointed out as corrupt in the last dispensation that his government has overlooked.
“I think that is not a fair criticism. I don’t think that there is anybody that is being pointed out as corrupt in the last dispensation that we looked the other way,” he said in response to the moderator, Kadariah Ahmed.
The moderator further asked Buhari what he was doing about the allegations against some of his close allies, like Mr. Babachir Lawal, a former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, and others.
“I have to be careful. But if there are strong allegations and people have bank accounts, names of companies looted, contracts awarded, then we take them before the courts through the EFCC and the ICPC and we have to trust the system,” Buhari responded.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo also added that the case of the former SGF was before the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and a directive had already been issued for his trial.
He further noted that Buhari needed another term in office to consolidate his achievements under this administration.
“We campaigned on three fundamental issues namely, the economy, the fight against corruption and security. In those three respects, we believe that we have laid very strong foundations and I very strongly believe that we are on to much more progress if given a second opportunity,” Osinbajo said
President Buhari however could not speak about the bribery allegations against Governor Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano State.
Mr. President noted that the case of Ganduje had become a subject of judicial and legislative proceedings and speaking about it could be subjudice.
Governor Ganduje was caught in a series of videos collecting bribes in dollars on several occasions.
Buhari however noted that he did not know whether the videos were manipulated.
We published a report last year regarding Amnesty International authenticating the video as genuine and not doctored.
Even with all the evidence, Mr. Ganduje still vehemently denied the allegation, saying that the videos were doctored.
With many other videos of the governor receiving bribe yet to be released, the publisher had been ordered to stop publishing the videos.
President Buhari on Wednesday said that the decision of the House to investigate the scandal and the suit instituted helped him and had made it impossible for him to speak about it publicly.
“The State Assembly is investigating and they have the mandate to deal with it and they have also gone to court, so I decided not to talk about it,” Mr. Buhari said.
A court order had however barred the State House of Assembly from further probing the allegation.
Buhari further admitted that he had seen the videos. He however humorously said with a smile; “Does Ganduje have to take the money himself?”
“The system has given me some relief, it is in the court and the Assembly,” he added.
Buhari said that he hoped that by the time he visits Kano State to campaign, a conclusive response would have been reached.
“I hope by the time I go to Kano for my campaign there will be some answers from the court or the Assembly,” he said.
Buhari has being perceived by Nigerians to treat corruption scandals against his allies with deodorant, but tackle corruption scandal against opposition with insecticide.