The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Aminu Tambuwal, has said the security challenges in the country should not cause a consideration of the postponement of the 2015 elections.
Tambuwal, who said he was opposed to such proposal, argued that if war-torn countries like Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq could conduct elections, the security situation in Nigeria should not be used as an excuse for shifting the elections.
The Speaker, who spoke in an interview with journalists on Sunday in Kaduna shortly after being screened to contest the governorship primaries in his native Sokoto State by officials of the North-west zone of the All Progressives Congress (APC), maintained that all that was needed was for the federal government to squarely address the issue of insecurity before the elections.
According to the Speaker, there was no reason whatsoever for anybody to cancel the forthcoming elections, adding that those charged with the responsibility of protecting lives and property of Nigerians should be up and doing.
He added that apart from government’s commitment to fighting insurgency in the land, Nigerians should also pray so that the insurgency would not go beyond February 2015 when the elections are expected to hold nationwide.
“What we should hope and pray for is that before February elections, the insurgency challenges should be addressed by the government.
“There are people whose responsibility it is either as number one citizen in the country or Chief of Army of Staff or the National Security Adviser or those charged with the responsibility of guaranteeing safety and security of the citizens as established by the constitution.
“They should do their work and ensure that we are all secured and safe. And then, let us hope and pray that by February, we should be able to come out en masse to cast our votes.
“We should pray that the insecurity should not go beyond February. What we should do is that we should be positive.
“The government should work hard towards addressing the insecurity challenges. I am opposed to the postponement of the elections. Elections are being held in Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq and several countries where there are security challenges.
“What we should do is to address and make up our minds on the fact that there should be elections come February, 2015,” he said.
Also commenting on his governorship ambition in Sokoto State, Tambuwal said his decision to run for the governorship was in response to the clarion calls by the people of the state to offer himself to serve in the capacity of the governor of the state.
Asked if he was threatened by his former party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the speaker said the PDP is not only dead in Sokoto State and the North-west, but in the entire country.
“You are misinforming the public on the current political barometre of the PDP. Which PDP are you talking about?” the Speaker asked rhetorically.
Zamfara State Governor, Alhaji Abdulaziz Abubakar Yari, was also among the 15 other APC governorship aspirants from the North-west states who appeared before the screening committee.