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Bisi Akande Is A Perfect Public Officer- Buhari 

  President Muhammadu Buhari has revealed that the former interim Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Bisi Akande is a ‘‘perfect public officer,” and a person he could go into the jungle with.   Speaking at the public presentation of ‘My Participations,’ the autobiography of Akande, Buhari stated that the author has retained inflexible integrity…”
Olamide
December 9, 2021 9:36 pm

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has revealed that the former interim Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Bisi Akande is a ‘‘perfect public officer,” and a person he could go into the jungle with.

 

Speaking at the public presentation of ‘My Participations,’ the autobiography of Akande, Buhari stated that the author has retained inflexible integrity in and out of public office, adding that he never accepted or offered bribes.

 

The President also described the former governor of State of Osun as a decent, truthful, and friendly person as well as an administrator of the first order, whose leadership qualities made him the unanimous choice as the first Chairman of the APC.

 

 

Buhari was quoted as saying in a statement issued by his spokesman, Femi Adesina, “My first personal contact with Chief Akande was, if I recall correctly, in 2006 when preliminary consultations were coming to fruition for a grand coalition to unseat the PDP Government.

 

“Those efforts eventually came to nothing. Neither he, nor I, nor many of our friends and associates gave up as, in Chief Akande’s words: “the country was going down and down under PDP” (p.396 of My Participations).”

 

While noting how Akande rose to prominence from his participation in the Constituent Assembly established by the Military Government of General Olusegun Obasanjo, Buhari said the ex-Osun governor was always in the thick of things through the difficulties and political discontinuities of the 1980s and 90s.

 

According to Buhari, Akande emerged as Governor of State of Osun in 1999 when the military handed over to the civilians.

 

“Chief Akande had a horrendous baptism as Governor of Osun with discord from his own party; his State Assembly (including an attempt to impeach him without any reason whatsoever); from the trade unions and from his own deputy governor!

 

“On top of that, he inherited a deeply indebted Treasury, huge arrears of salary, allowances, and pensions. Enough challenges to overwhelm many aspiring leaders.

 

“Bisi Akande stood four square and faced all the challenges head-on and overcame most of them. His first action was to stop payment of “critical allowances” a euphemism for government money customarily shared by the big boys in Osun.

 

“This set the tone of his Administration. By 2003 Chief Akande had virtually sanitised governance in Osun having cleared some of the troublemakers from his government and, though reluctant to serve a second term, he was persuaded to run again,” he said.

 

The President reflected on the political history of the author, particularly his bid to seek a second term as Osun governor.

 

Buhari noted that Akande was the victim – along with other AD Governors – of a diabolical double-cross which ended his gubernatorial career.

 

He added that it was only APC National Leader and ex-Lagos governor, Bola Tinubu, whom the President said escaped the electoral massacre masterminded by President Obasanjo.

 

“Desperately disappointed though he was, and being a good Muslim, he accepted this setback as part of the trials of life. He looked to the future of service to the country.

 

“Chief Akande was in the thick of further attempts in 2011 and 2014 to fuse together different groups and dislodge PDP from governance.

 

“The key to his thinking which coincides with mine is that Nigeria can only be successfully managed by alliances between major groups.

 

“Although we failed in 2011, by persistence and knowledge that PDP was driving the country towards disaster, several major parties were able to finally coalesce into APC in 2014.

 

“Chief Akande was unanimously chosen as the first Chairman of this great coalition. Throughout the difficult negotiations, I found Akande truthful, steady and always with an eye to the ultimate goal.

 

“In or out of office, he has retained his inflexible integrity. On p.400 of his book, he wrote: ‘I never gave to or demanded bribe from anyone all my life.’ A perfect gentleman. A perfect public officer,” Buhari stated further.

 

Quoting a famous Hausa saying, ”Labarin zucciya a tambayi fuska” (loosely translated -if you want to know what is in a man’s heart watch his face), President Buhari affirmed that Akande has a permanent smile on his face, saying ”He is the type I will go into the jungle with.”

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