By Ikechukwu Okaforadi
Majority Leader House of Representatives, Ado Doguwa, yesterday cautioned President Muhammadu Buhari against postponing the 2023 general elections, even as he said the 2022 Electoral Act remains as passed by both chambers of the National Assembly.
Fielding questions from journàlists yesterday in Abuja shortly after the National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting of the All Progressive Congress (APC), Doguwa also said contrary to calls by opposition that the 2023 general election should be suspended because of insecurity, Nigeria has enough and significant security.
Doguwa also said INEC and the security agencies are ready for the 2023 general election, even as he expressed confidence that they can afford the minimum security standard to prosecute the next year general election.
According to him, “Insinuations from the opposition are baseless; baseless because they don’t even have the numbers, baseless because some of the problems are not on ground, they are not pragmatic. These are artificial problems they are raising for the system.
“For instance, when someone said suspend general elections until we have security, we have enough and significant security. There is nothing that will stop the general election in 2023. INEC is set, the security agencies are also set.
“We believe they can afford the minimum level of security to go for elections. No one should insinuate suspending elections because this is democracy, we have rules of the game and the rules of the game have also set aside how to go about it in terms of timeline and time frame.
“So this government cannot afford to make this mistake and we will not make it, we will have our general elections conducted because all other institutions that are involved in the election procedures; nobody has raised alarms, Nigerians are set, the time has come and we will go ahead doing the best we can and by 2023, I want to beat my chest to tell you that the APC still remains the party to beat and we will produce the next President to take over from Muhammadu Buhari”, he said.
Reacting to his purported governorship ambition, the House of Representatives Leader said “these are reports. When times goes and continues, these reports will be very fine, but for now, I cannot comment on this question but I believe everyone will want to progress, but as far as I am concerned, I want to tell you for record that as at today, I have no intention whatsoever to run for governorship of my state, but if God in his infinite mercy allows me and gives me the chance, I will ask you to clap for me and give me the chance.
“Fine, I will join the race but for now I want to run for the House of Representatives of my Federal Constituency back in the House and see what God will bless me with come 2023.
“They call me a repeater in the House of Representatives and I accepted to be a repeater, but in the course of repeating the same class, I have now become a class monitor and I hope if God gives me a chance, I want to be a Headboy come 2023. There is no two ways about that”, he said.