Ex-Military Leader, Babangida Says He is Quiting Politics For Good-Former military president Ibrahim Babangida has said that he would not seek any political office forever again in Nigeria.
He made this known on Tuesday in a statement signed by him in Minna where he also turned down an invitation by the PDP for a re-branding conference.
Babangida said that he would, however, continue to offer his wise counsel to all politicians towards building a better Nigeria.
“If I called it quit in 2011, why would PDP contemplate fielding a 78 year-old man in a presidential election in a country that parades very vibrant men and women of lesser age?
“I have no intention whatsoever to run for any office again in Nigeria,” he said.
Babangida described and invitation by the PDP leaders who are attempting to rebuild the party as welcoming but would not engage in the effort.
He said: “While I welcome the invitation to the event as a mark of respect as one of the founding fathers, I want to be excused on the grounds that I have long bid bye to partisan politics.
“Engaging would amount to playing partisan politics and I want to remain an elder statesman.
ur years ago in Abuja at an elaborate event at the Transcorp Hilton Hotels, Babangida announced his retirement from partisan politics after he failed the contest for PDP Presidential candidacy,” he said.
Prior to this announcement, Gen Ibrahim Babangida on the presidential Election Day Saturday April 16,2011 after casting her vote had announced that he was finally withdrawing from active politics, saying that it was time to give young generations the chance to build the country.
Answering questions after casting his vote at there Up Hill polling station, Sabon Gari, Minna, Babangida had also touched on many national issues including advocating for a two party system for the country in the future as well as the need for states to control their own police. Accompanied by his daughter, Halima and son, Mohammed, the former Head of State spoke further that he belonged to the ruling Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) and that as a founding father, would never leave PDP for another party.
But speaking on the same issue during an Easter holiday break few weeks later in London on April,26 2011, Babangida’s spokesman, Prince Kazeem Afegbua, said he ( Babangida) had no intention to retire from politics yet.
Responding to questions on London based Black Television station, Ben Television, Afegbua snapped: “How can Babangida retire from serving the people? He is an elder statesman, a founding member of the PDP ever before many of those craving for political top posts now even ever know the PDP.
He added that the ‘evil genius’ as he is fondly called would always be there to work with those in government to proffer solutions to challenges such as employment, infrastructure and developing the next generation of leaders”.
According to Afegbua, Babangida has no power to volunteer by himself from PDP as the former military dictator would need to engage his team before any such announcement of his retirement is ever going to be discussed.
Afegbua said Babangida as a leader and a member of the Northern Leaders Political Forum (NPLF”, has a greater stake on national issues in Nigeria, a claim a political analyst said was understandable because of the collective vision the Northern elders have for their region and Buhari having occupied the presidency, which creates the opportunity to pursue same North regional dream directly or indirectly.
“As a leader and a member of the Northern Leaders Political Forum (NPLF)claimed Babangida has a greater stake on national issues in Nigeria”, Afegbua said.
PLAYBACK 2010: http://emn-news.com/babangida-again-says-he-is-still-eyeing-the-presidency-as-independent-candidate/