The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2019 elections, Atiku Abubakar, has said that all is not well with Nigeria as a nation.
Atiku said this on Monday in his message ahead of the nation’s 59th independence anniversary on October 1.
He said that at 59, the nation’s founding fathers would never have imagined that there would be no free press.
“Our judiciary is under attack, and our youths and activists, who should ordinarily be the future of Nigeria, would be facing the very real threat of arrest and intimidation should they speak out about the state of the nation,” he said.
In his statement, the former Vice President quoted the late writer Chinua Achebe who once wrote: “When an adult is in the house, the she-goat is not left to suffer the pain of parturition on its tether.”
He added: “All is not well when Nigeria is now officially the world headquarters for extreme poverty and out of school children, yet the cost of maintaining those in government continues to grow, while the needs of the governed are not being met.”
Atiku also said that instead of just calling for prayers, he would request Nigerians “to believe in Nigeria’s betterment, to work for Nigeria’s betterment, and to insist that no one in Nigeria, no matter how highly placed, shall be bigger than the laws of our land.”
He commended Governor Bello Matawalle of Zamfara State for “massively investing in public education.”
Atiku also praised the chairman of Air Peace, Allen Onyeama, for repatriating Nigerians in South Africa in the face of xenophobic attacks.
“Nigeria belongs to all of us and we all have a role to play in making our nation great. Nigeria should be the beacon of hope, democracy, and freedom, to not only the African continent but to the black diaspora the world over,” he said.