Senator Rabiu Kwankwaso, said that he has the capacity to defeat President Muhammadu Buhari, in the 2019 Presidential election. He said this on Friday, during an interview on Channels Television.
Kwankwaso while speaking, also claimed that he has the numbers and followership, large enough to win the primaries of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
“PDP is a better PDP now. Talking about who is the best, who has the capacity to defeat the incumbent, who can run the government even after the election, where we have peace, stability, development, good infrastructure, human development, and so on; in my opinion, you are just talking about Rabiu Kwankwaso”, he said.
“Politics, as you know, is a game of numbers. I am so lucky to come from Kano, where we have the largest number of people, going by the last census in this country, and also the most popular zone.
“I am also lucky that in Kano State, we have huge followership, people who are committed, because they believe in us, and they believe that if we succeed, they will also succeed”, he added.
Kwankwaso, who is currently the Senator representing Kano Central Senatorial District, said that the Kwankwasiyya Movement (his supporters), have never been as popular as it is today, in Kano State, and in Nigeria as a whole.
This, he said, was because of his achievements as a Governor – in terms of infrastructure and education.
“A lot has been achieved, and that is why it was very easy bringing people together to support the Movement. Even when I contested, I was not really supported by the Federal Government at that time. PDP will win the elections, most likely 100 percent again”, he said.
While stating that he can revive the nation’s economy, the Senator blamed the Buhari-led government for driving the country into recession.
“The mistake that this administration did, in my own opinion, was that they wasted five, six months without any government structures, especially in the issues of Ministers, and other important appointments.
“In other words, people went to sleep for five – six months in this country, and that was why in 2016, we had to go into recession, because everybody was sleeping, doing nothing.
“And I can tell you, in 2011, when I was elected, we were able to inaugurate our State Assembly and get the names of our Commissioners, within one week. And within that same week, we had our first Executive Council meeting. And we were working until the last day”, he said.
It is not the first time Kwankwaso would be making such promises. Upon exiting the All Progressives Party, APC, for the PDP, he had in August, declared his intention to run for the office of President.
In his declaration speech, the former Governor listed some critical areas he intends to tackle, if elected.
These include: security, economy, social challenges, infrastructure, human capital development and global competitiveness, education, research and innovation.
Other areas he listed are: agribusiness, healthcare delivery, international relations, youth and women empowerment, national unity, cohesion and restructuring.
“I intend to offer positive change. Change has again become inevitable. To live is to witness changes, because change is an inseparable part of living. Come May 2019, the narrative of helplessness, buck- passing, division, poverty, insecurity, and hopelessness, must change to turn to a new dawn of confidence in building a one well restructured Nigeria”, he noted.
Apart from Kwankwaso, other major PDP Presidential Aspirants are: ex-Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, Senate President, Bukola Saraki, Governors Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State, and Ibrahim Dankwambo of Gombe State, and ex-Governors Sule Lamido, and Attahiru Bafarawa.
Kwankwaso often claims credit for helping Buhari secure 1.9 million votes in Kano State, in 2015.
Kwankwaso also helped Governor Umar Ganduje, his then Deputy, while he was Governor, to power in the 2015 elections. Both men have since fallen out, with Ganduje, the now Governor, vowing to ensure President Buhari wins Kano State overwhelmingly, in 2019.
Kwankwaso once served as Defence Minister, and was elected Kano State Governor on the platform of the PDP, but joined the then-newly-formed APC, in 2013, as part of the renegade ‘newPDP’ bloc.
He is one of the most influential Politicians to defect from the APC, since Atiku Abubakar left the party, last November.