From Muhammad Ibrahim, Kaduna
A Kaduna based renown Islamic scholar, Sheikh Ahmed Gumi has called on the leadership of the country to desist from imposing its will on the people.
The Scholar noted that such acts could spore disobedience: “If people elect leaders; people are ready to obey them. But if you impose yourself using whatever means you have in power, people will disobey you and there would be commotion” he added that if politicians can avoid that Nigerian problems will be completely taken care off.
Gumi was speaking when the Chairman of Leadership Newspapers led his campaign team to the scholar’s resident in Kaduna as part of their nationwide consultation on his presidential ambition come 2015.
The cleric said the right to elect leaders is the wish of the people, adding that the country is gradually coming to it.
“I just hope that from 2015 such rights would be truly exercised. If we exercise such rights all the problems we have will disappear, he said.
He noted that a credible election starting from the grassroots is the first step towards solving the problem.
Sheikh Gumi further explained that the constitution gives every Nigerian equal franchise to vote and be voted for.
“This is something every Nigerian should understand and we should respect this constitutional provision if we want to free the nation.
“Everybody should be allowed to contest and is you are defeaed, do not assume that that is the end of the road “He should be able to accept and assist in continuing development of the nation. But what we have is ones somebody is defeated he goes back to join the opposition. He lamented the fact that some politicians exhibit the traits of bad sportsmanship, adding that a healthy environment for competition, devoid of such malice will lead to credible election.
“People should not be allowed to be intimidated by incumbency that comes by power, money or a yield to pressure. Let there be a free and fair elections that we would be proud of,”the urged.
The Islamic leader further advised the delegation to be ready to accept the wish and decision of the people.
“As you are aspiring I wish you good luck on your endeavour. I will only advise you to accept people’s decision and not to try manipulating people in whatever form because leadership is a collective responsibility,” he said.
Earlier, Mr Sam Nda Isaiah said they were not at the house to campaign but to inform the scholar of his presidential ambition come 2015.
“ As far as I am concerned the simplest thing any leader can do is to unite his people. It is a very simple thing. We are not campaigning we only came to intimate you on what we are doing which is consulting and I feel I should come and inform you so that you will not only read it on newspaper,” he said.
He also lamented the division among Nigerians based religious or tribal lines.