The National Chairman of the National Conscience Party, Dr Yinusa Tanko on Monday said Nigeria had yet to attain its rightful place in the comity of nations owing to leadership problems.
Tanko made the statement in Lagos while formally declaring his ambition to run for the presidency.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the event attracted a large number of NCP members from across the states.
Mohammed Fawehinmi, son of the party’s founder, late Gani Fawehinmi, and a former National Secretary of the party, Mr Femi Aborishade, were among prominent persons at the event.
A former governor of old Kaduna State, Alhaji Balarabe Musa, was also present in his capacity as National Chairman of the Conference of Nigerian Political Parties (CNPP).
Tanko blamed the plethora of challenges of the nation on leadership deficit, saying it had stifled development.
He said such problems as poor economy, insecurity, unemployment and poor health and education systems could surmounted by a focussed and altruistic leadership.
Tanko said the need to fix Nigeria and birth a new, working nation inspired his decision to seek the party’s ticket to run for the number one office in the country.
He pointed out that his declaration did not preclude other aspirants from the party from contesting the primary with him.
Speaking, Fawehinmi described Tanko as a loyal follower of his father and said his commitment to the party had helped keep the party afloat.
He said he was in support of his presidential aspiration and urged Nigerians especially the youths to support him.
Speaking, Musa said he was at the declaration, first to identify with the NCP founded by Fawehinmi and also to honour Tanko who was the National Publicity Secretary of CNPP, of which he (Musa) was Chairman.
He said though he was not an NCP member, he, in a way, associated with the party because of the love for the masses which Fawehinmi lived for in his lifetime.
Musa wished Tanko all the best in his aspiration and said his prayers were with him.
In his speech, Aborishade said defeating the All Progressives Congress would be a herculean task.
“NCP cannot dislodge APC alone. If we are saying that, we are deceiving ourselves.
“There is a need for our party to form an electoral alliance with parties with like ideologies to defeat them.
“In the alliance I am talking about, the NCP will still retain its autonomy and banner,” he said.
In his remarks, the National General Secretary of the party, Mr Ayodele Akele, clarified that Tanko’s declaration should not be taken as flag off of his campaign.
He said the clarification was necessary so that the party would not be seen as flouting the electoral guidelines, which had stated a later date for campaigns.
Akele said the declaration did not also mean that the party had adopted Tanko, saying all aspirants were welcome to declare their intention.
“We will provide s level playing ground for everybody who wants to aspire to the presidency under the banner of the party.
“Just as I am here to witness Tanko’s declaration, I will be at the declaration of any other aspirants,” he said.
Akele wished Tanko all the best and said the party would support him if he emerged candidate of the party. (NAN)