President Muhammadu Buhari has urged Nigerian politicians to emulate the virtues of late Olusola Saraki, father of former Senate President, Bukola Saraki, by engaging in politics of development.
Mr Buhari, represented by Governor Babagana Zulum of Borno State, said this at the 10th memorial anniversary of Mr Saraki in Abuja on Monday.
Mr Saraki, who was the Second Republic Senate Leader, died in 2012.
“Saraki was a Nigerian statesman who participated in the evolution of Nigeria’s political development.
“He is one of the politicians that earned the respect of many Nigerians. We appreciate his contributions to our polity.
“I want to use this opportunity to ask my fellow politicians to take away lesson from the lecture that he has been delivered with a view to moving Nigeria forward,” Mr Buhari said.
The Sultan of Sokoto, Sa’ad Abubakar, urged Nigerian politicians to uphold truth and transparency in all their dealings.
The sultan, who is the president-general, Nigerian Supreme Council For Islamic Affairs, advised Nigerian politicians to eschew violence in their electioneering campaign for 2023 general election.
He said that electoral campaigns should be a battle of ideas and not violence.
“Where you have good leaders, you will have good followership, if you have bad followership, you will have bad leadership.
“For leaders, we want to urge you to always uphold the truth, be honest, be transparent and be accountable because Almighty Allah will ask you.
“Campaign honestly, campaign like gentleman and convince people to vote for you and when you get the votes, discharge your responsibility to the best of your knowledge,” Mr Abubakar said.
Speaking with journalists after the event former Senate President Bukola Saraki urged politicians to make sacrifice that would make Nigeria a better place.
He also urged his followers to show interest and commitment in seeking qualities required to make Nigeria great country.
“Nigeria is a country that we can do much better now. The kind of life my father lived is about the people. It is about sacrifices. You can see here people from the APC, from the PDP and other parties are all here.
“This should send you a very strong message and everybody leaving here to have a thinking that we must be determined to do the right thing.
“As leaders, if elected we must serve our people. As followers, come February, March 2023, we have to vote for true leaders, not what we get on the day of election because at the end of the day that will not make the country better.
“So I hope we all pray that February or March next year will be an opportunity to rethink the direction of this country by electing the right leaders,” Mr Saraki said.
The Minister of State for Mines and Steel Development, Gbemisola Saraki, said her late father believed in the health and wellbeing of Nigerians and the development the country.
Some dignitaries at the event included Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State, Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom State, Governor Diri Duoye of Bayelsa State and Governor Atiku Bagudu of Kebbi State.
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