Atiku Abubakar, one of the presidential aspirants of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), says the current administration is the worst to emerge since the civil war.
Abubakar, who was vice president from 1999 to 2007, said this on Sunday at a media chat organised under the aegis of The United Nigeria Group (TUNG) in Abuja.
Listing his achievements in his years as a civil servant and vice president—where he chaired the economic team, he said he is a better and experienced presidential aspirant to solve Nigeria’s problems.
“So I believe this country requires all of these that I enumerated. In fact since the civil war I have not seen Nigeria in such a bad shape,” he said.
Lamenting the unemployment rate, the presidential hopeful said the present administration threw the country into recession and it’s yet to come out of it.
“Our unemployment rate is the highest, over 12 million men and women are unemployed. Our growth is at its lowest, when PDP administration was in power GDP growth rate was about 6%,” he said.
“But they took it over and crashed it; and dragged the nation into recession. We are trying to come out of recession at about 1.6 % growth, but consider the growth of our population.”
Abubakar who defected from the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) to PDP in 2017 said he is the candidate that can take the country out of crisis.
He said Nigerians can attest to what his administration did in the eight years when they were in power, and if the subsequent government had continued with their policies, Nigeria would have been better for it.
“So, anyone who can come and lift up our economy to a level where our GDP growth will surpass our population growth, I think is the leader we should at this point in time support and give the opportunity to take our country out of this crisis. And that is what I stand for,” he said.
“I assembled the best economic team (as Vice President) with that we did well and Nigerians attested to what we did in those 8 years. We liberalised the economy, we expanded the private sector’s participation and tried to limit government to the necessary issues. If these policies we started were continued, today we will have been in a better country. I believe we need somebody who can come and continue with these policies so that we can bring back our prosperity, create more jobs for our unemployed youths.”
He added that he had reached out to other presidential aspirants in the PDP and he would bring them in to be part of his government.
“There is no single aspirant that I have not been to, to ask for his support and also to work together. Fortunately, each and everyone of them bring something to the table different from the other. And I believe it will not be a problem for me bringing them together to participate with me in government and also in whatever capacity they feel they can support the government,” he said.