Politics

2027 Presidency: ‘North solidly behind Tinubu’ – Matawalle

The Minister of State for Defence, Bello Matawalle, has said that anyone who sees President Bola Tinubu as a failure or a weakling is either political blind or misguided.

He said this while responding to a threat by the Northern Elders Forum (NEF) that the North will not vote for Tinubu in 2027.

Recall that the forum, through its spokesman Abdul-Azeez Suleiman, expressed regrets that the region voted for Tinubu during 2023, noting that going forward, the region will prioritize unity and consensus in selecting a candidate for the highest office in the land.

But Matawalle, the immediate past governor of Zamfara State described the forum as a “political burden”, adding that NEF is not, and can never speak for the region.

He added that he and other leaders would not allow “some elements” to bring Northern region into disrepute.

In a statement on Saturday, Matawalle wondered why many people overlooked what he termed “overbearing attitude” of the forum on issues that affect political unity and cohesion of the country.

He said: “This NEF is more of a political burden to Northerners. The group is seeking to erode other people’s rights in order to be recognised or made  relevant in the scheme of things despite the failure of their sponsored candidates in the 2023 general elections.

“In as much as many have overlooked them in respect of their utterances, it is pertinent to underscore their overbearing attitude on issues that affect political unity and cohesion.

“They cannot offer any positive idea or thought about the future of Northern Nigeria or, indeed, of Nigeria and its unity and togetherness.

“We all know President Bola Ahmed Tinubu GCFR won the February 2023 presidential election convincingly. So, who is the NEF to want to undermine the president’s victory and even threaten to unseat him?”

The minister further argued that the same group of people had intentionally shied away from their responsibility of engendering unity in the North by appreciating the incremental development being brought to the North by Ministers appointed by Tinubu from the North, especially North-West.

According to him, the forum has not deemed it fit to seek audience with President to discuss issues affecting the Northern region despite the numerous challenges facing the North as rightly highlighted by the President and being addressed by him.

“The group is yet to visit any of the  ministers dealing with issues of security, agriculture, water resources, police affairs, education, health, budget, foreign affairs or any head of security agencies in the country so far for first hand knowledge of government programs and actions. ”

“The majority of them are more interested in faulting the government so as to be recognised or accorded some relevance.

“Our region, the North, is united, disciplined and politically-driven enough not to listen and accept being teleguided by any group of elites who had fed fat in the past on the North’s resources and opportunities which had  retarded development in the region and nation due to their selfishness.

“President Tinubu is poised to do a lot for the North as President of Nigeria, elected by the people of Nigeria, not by one ethnic group or the other, therefore, anyone mistakenly seeing President Tinubu as a failure or a weakling is making a mistake and should rethink.

“Such a person or group is either blind or misguided and unable to see the new Nigeria that is emerging. Therefore, the NEF’s statement allegedly expressing regret for voting for President Tinubu is unfortunate.

“NEF is not more than a group that has refused to accept reality and is living in delusion. The truth is that the North is proud of its support and vote for President Tinubu and will continue to be proud of her relationship with the President given the enormous change and development his government has brought to the region.”

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