The former aide to Vice President Atiku Abubakar when he was still in the corridor of power, Dr. Umar Ardo, has flayed President Muhammadu Buhari, asking him to practice what he preaches.
He also accused the president of abandoning all those who helped him to the presidency in 2015 despite his swearing-in 2011 when he lost the presidential election to former President Goodluck Jonathan that he will no longer contest in the presidential election again.
Ardo, who was reacting to the Buhari’s comments that the elites should be fair to him in their criticisms, said: “At a time when he lost the presidential election for the third time in April 2011, and most people were running away from him, it was at that time that l patriotically braved it and came to his support. I brought in new ideas (strategy), new vigour and contacts, and other real and tangible values to his political aspiration. I influenced him to change his political stance and agree to go to the tribunal and to contest again.
“After he agreed to contest again, I sourced for the funding of all aspects of my approved ideas. So l didn’t sell my ideas to him for money. Hence, between April 2011, when his then party, CPC, went to the tribunal and July 2013, when the All Progressives Congress (APC) was registered, l was about his closest political confidant in the execution of the new strategy. And the result is what he is today-the president! Undoubtedly, without me doing what I did in this intervening period, Buhari would never have been the president of Nigeria in 2015 as it turned out.”
He continued: “But what did l get in return on victory, rejection and total lockout. Astonishingly, I have till date not set my eyes on him from the day he was announced, president-elect. The last time we communicated on phone was on the election day-March 28, 2015. For no fault of mine that I know, he has not even seen me to congratulate him on the victory l put in so much efforts for him to achieve, let alone giving me protection against his powerful opponents that l took on in the process.
“Unlike most others who negotiated for their support to him, I didn’t ask for anything; all l wanted was his victory in the hope that he would fix this country, especially ridding Boko Haram and Nigeria of corruption. And that is the truth. Can a leader who acted in this manner appeal for fairness?
“So, what did we, our followers and communities do to deserve this? No one till date told us that, and that’s all we want to be told. We feel betrayed by a cause we practically put our lives on the line for. It’s so painful. As you know, three things define a man: ‘his perseverance when in need; his attitude on attaining his need; and his gratitude towards those who help him attain his need’.
“These three qualities tell who a person truly is! In the light of these, therefore, can the president in all honesty talk of fairness? I think not. As fairness is reciprocal, if President Buhari wants to be treated fairly (not that we criticise him unfairly), he must also learn to treat people, treat Nigerians and treat those who helped him attain his otherwise unattainable ambition fairly.”