The Catholic Archbishop of Abuja, John Cardinal Onaiyekan, says it is time for President Muhammadu Buhari to retire but he is free to contest another election if his party gives him its 2019 ticket.
In an interview with Newsmen, the cardinal said the All Progressives Congress (APC) has not fulfilled the promises which made people vote for it in 2015.
“Personally, if he (Buhari) comes to me for advice, I will tell him it is time for retirement. But as you know, constitutionally, he is free (to contest),” he said.
“He is free to go for a second term if his party gives him the ticket at the primaries and he goes out and does what it requires to campaign and Nigerians are allowed to vote and their votes are counted properly.
“The promises that I was given have not been fulfilled. The promises I was given which helped me to make up my mind, those promises have not been fulfilled.”
Onaiyekan said since the president has indicated to run for another term in office, he should ensure that the 2019 election is free and fair.
“We want a country where votes will count. Just as Jonathan created a situation where INEC ran election with relative autonomy to the extent that the president himself lost, the present government should run the election in such a way that even the president can lose because himself is a beneficiary of an electoral system that allows the incumbent to lose,” the archbishop said.
“It is when the incumbent loses that we can really be sure that there is some amount of transparency.”
He described the ruling party as a bundle of confusion, saying the interest which brought most members of the party together was to take power from Jonathan.
“APC is a bundle of confusion. It is a bundle of people from different, different directions. And as you can see, there are people in the APC who now find themselves almost strange,” he said.
“People came into APC with one objective to vote out Jonathan and in fact, among those who joined to vote out Jonathan were many who were working with Jonathan before. It has come out very clearly that by the time we look at the statistics, the number of former PDP people who went into APC, is preponderant. So, people went into APC because they saw it at that time as the party that was more likely to win and luckily for them, the party won and they have always been in power.
“So, politicians have been deceiving Nigerians and I say it is about time they stop.”