Governor of Ekiti State, Kayode Fayemi, on Wednesday, formally declared his presidential ambition on the platform of the All Progressives Congress.
While declaring his ambition in Abuja, the Chairman of the Nigeria Governors Forum listed some challenges he intends to fix if he becomes the president of the country in 2023.
The PUNCH reports that 13 aspirants have so far joined the APC presidential race. Some of them are Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, and Senator Rochas Okorocha.
Others are Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State, the Minister of Labour and Productivity, Dr Chris Ngige; Minister of State for Education, Mr Chukwuemeka Nwajuba; Governor David Umuahi of Ebonyi State; Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio, and former Edo State Governor, Adams Oshiomhole.
The Ekiti State governor explained that he wants to be a president to ensure peace, and secure a future for Nigeria’s children.
Fayemi also said he has enough public service experience to pilot the affairs of Nigeria.
He said, “Beyond my early forays into the public sphere as a student leader, my abiding faith in the oneness of our country has been further reinforced by all my subsequent engagements in national affairs as a scholar, civil society voice and institution-builder, community and political organiser with an unapologetic pan-Nigerian and pan-African outlook, tireless advocate for human rights and democratic governance, two-term governor, federal minister, a founding Coordinator of the Progressive Governors’ Forum, and two-term Chairman of Nigeria Governors’ Forum.
“Here then is my motivating testament and confession: I am a patriot born in these climes in the course of the first decade of our country’s independence, and I stake a bold claim to say that I am a full-blooded child of Nigeria. I grew up as did many of my generation socialised into the ideals of a united and virile nation. In my lifetime, I have witnessed some heart-warming moments of nation- and state-building that would make any citizen anywhere immeasurably proud.
“But I have also seen some truly challenging days in our journey of nationhood which have tested our collective resolve and demanded the exercise of considerable political savvy by our leaders over the years. I have taken as a key lesson from the admixture of high and low points we have experienced as a country that when and where we are charitable to one another and allow our shared humanity, innate spirit of solidarity, hard work, perseverance and underlying patriotism to prevail, we always succeed in overcoming and thriving through adversity.
“Hope such as I offer with my candidature is premised on a shared vision on which we can all agree, and for which we collectively strive, of a nation that is more confidently and uncompromisingly at one with itself, serving as home for all of us regardless of ethnicity, class, gender, age, disability, region or religion.”
Fayemi promised that he would in the course of this campaign adhere to the highest standards of decorum, decency, and respect that Nigerians expect of their leaders.
He pledged to bring to full fruition his promises to the pride of all Nigerians and the admiration of the world.
Some of the promises he made are:
– To give full effect to this, concrete programmes of action will be launched in priority areas that will allow for a revamping of the credibility of the Nigerian state, the promotion and fulfillment of an enhanced social contract, and the rebirth of the national identity.
– Programmatically, as the standard bearer of the All Progressives Congress, I will be leading the implementation of a holistic and integrated response to the multifaceted security crises confronting us. To this end, the retooling of our armed forces, intelligence agencies, and border guards will be pursued in tandem with an overhaul of our policing system and the phasing in of bold universal social policies that will enable us decisively tackle poverty and upgrade human capital and security.
– The adoption of broad socio-economic measures that enhance our capacity to fight insecurity must be done at the same time as investments in reinforcing the deterrent capacity of the state through its armed forces, security agencies, and policing authorities. Authority and legitimacy coupled with deterrence and rapid response go hand in hand, just as we must better design and interface economic policies with broad social objectives and goals of political inclusivity towards a well-defined outcome, namely, sustained peace, stability, and progress of our country.
– Let there be no doubt: For the economy to serve broader social and political purposes that enhance human and state security, stem poverty, and promote national prosperity, my agenda for Nigeria encompasses attention to questions of productivity, diversification, domestic value addition, investments in and incentives for research, development, and innovation, and the expansion of domestic revenue mobilisation, among others.
– Considerable work is already ongoing on the upgrading and expansion of our infrastructure and one of my prime objectives would be to accelerate this both through public investments and partnerships with the private sector whilst simultaneously ensuring that we enforce accountability and get much greater value for money.
– By the same token, a major rescue and investment programme for the education sector, the health system, the civil service, and the local government system will be launched to re-orient each of them for the task of overall national development, and progress and prosperity.
– I fully understand that we cannot secure our prosperity without ensuring that our agricultural sector is able to deliver self-sufficiency in critical food markets, feed our efforts at agro-allied industrialisation and thus meaningfully enable the transformation of the unemployed into gainful employment, reinvigorate the rural areas, foster the coordinated expansion of commodity exchanges, and boost the flow of foreign exchange into the economy.
– No vision of national prosperity however impeccable or programme of national transformation however comprehensive can deliver the outcomes desired without attention to the planning system of government writ large. We must build on recent successes in restoring our national planning system and statistical capacity in order to open new, forward-looking approaches to development management that is research and data-driven.
– As part of this commitment, a holistic approach to decentralisation will be embraced and institutionalised so that government and its services are brought closer to the people. Our programme of decentralisation will also feed into the goals of a stronger, more united, and stable Nigeria, outcomes which are not only good for our domestic prospects but which will also benefit West Africa, the rest of the African continent, and a troubled international multilateral system.