Nigeria’s President-elect, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, has told President Muhammadu Buhari to be ready to serve the nation after leaving office on May 29 saying he would always be consulted, wherever he may be within or outside Nigeria.
Asiwaju, who spoke on Thursday at the State House, Abuja, after the investiture of national honours of the Grand Commander of the Order of the Federal Republic (GCFR) and the Grand Commander of the Order of the Niger (GCON) on him and Vice President-elect Kashim Shettima, respectively, by President Buhari, also vowed not to disappoint the President in the task to provide quality leadership to the nation.
Tinubu, who also received Transition Documents and Baton of Service from Buhari at the event, said “whether you go to Daura or Niger or anywhere, you’ll expect knocks on your doors.
“We are determined, as enumerated, on security, economy, agriculture, jobs, education, health and power, and in all sectors. We must make headway as you’ve charted the course, the people deserve no less. You said so. I shall not disappoint you”, he pledged
The former Lagos state governor hailed President Buhari for his democratic credentials, making history by recognizing late Chief M.K.O. Abiola and Ambassador Babagana Kingibe as winners of the 1993 presidential elections and honouring them with GCFR, and GCON honours, respectively.
He, however, noted that he was not oblivious of the enormous responsibilities facing the administration he is about to lead, adding that he would not disappoint the expectations of Nigerians.
“Your devotion to progressive and democratic governance is unassailable. I stand here today, renewed in hope and dedication to our national greatness. I also feel full of pride that this moment is our moment and I know what it represents. This stately occasion is proof that Nigeria is a vibrant and true democracy. It confirms that our democratic path is right and nothing will deter us from sticking to it, I assure you.
“Our ways shall not be always smooth, yes, democracy is ‘rough and tumble’, hill and valley, yet we are imbued with faith in our purpose and believe in our collective ability to overcome the challenges that confront us.
“President Buhari, you have shown courage in taking tough decisions others avoided. One such decision is to recognize the injustice of the annulment the 1993 election, to designate June 12 as a Democracy Day and to bestow the nation’s highest honour on late MKO Abiola.
“As much as anyone could, you reached back into history to set the record straight and heal the festering wound. Thank you. The justice you did in this matter lends special meanings to today.
“The people have put their trust in us, you have done your part Mr. President, now a great duty will descend on me. I understanding the meaning of the honor given to me today and the magnitude of the task that awaits”, Tinubu said.
He congratulated the President for providing strong and visionary leadership for eight years, saying “it is a great honour for me to stand before you today, but let me first of all say thank you Mr. President. I can only call you Mr. Democrat. You have bestowed the nation’s highest on my Vice President-elect, Shettima, and me.
“Our deep thanks also for the Transition Documents, which clearly enumerated the efforts of the past eight years. The documents summarize the immense works of your administration. They consist an impressive and noteworthy scorecard. You have made history and no one can deny your contribution to our national development”, Tinubu further said.
Deji Elumoye in Abuja