In continuation of the merger talks among the major opposition parties in the country ahead of the 2015 election, the leader of the opposition Action Congress of Nigeria, Bola Tinubu Thursday led a strong delegation of the party’s stalwart to meet with the leader of the Congress for Progressive Change, Muhammadu Buhari, at his residence in Kaduna.
The visit also appears a reciprocal one as Mr. Buhari had paid a similar visit to Mr. Tinubu some weeks ago in Lagos.
Although, none of those who attended the meeting which was held behind closed doors addressed the media, Mr. Tinubu said their meeting centred around the need to have a credible election in 2015 because according to him,”the conduct of free and fair elections are critical to the growth of democracy and development in Nigeria”.
Mr. Tinubu said the ACN and the CPC are working for a positive change in 2015 that will lead to the formation of a government led by progressive minds.
“We are working for a positive change in 2015. We don’t want to be perpetually be in opposition, every politician wants the opportunity to govern,”he said.
Mr Tinubu also declined to give details of their discussions saying only that “as politicians we discussed in general the situation in the country and how we can help ameliorate the problems facing the nation”.
Throwing a little light however, Mr.Tinubu said the meeting was fruitful as it was transparent for all present and a lot of progress was made on the way forward.
“The doors are open and politics is not about a dark room event. It is about transparency and our ability to work with one another for a common agenda and that is the purpose; we are still looking at areas where we can help our nation. As you all know, patriotism is about putting the national interest above self.
“If we have security agencies that are charge with the protection of the sovereignty of the country at the expense of their own lives, then the leaders must be able to make sacrifices and be flexible enough to help redirect. Not just anybody can steer the ship of a nation, but it takes exceptional leadership to chart the course and steer the ship to a proper destination” he also said.
“I am not going to be specific, but we discuss on the national patriotism and the direction the nation is going and the need for a change. That change may be about us, forming a government of our own”.
He said,’every democrat must be able to work hard and sacrifice for a free and election. Any democrat must be able to celebrate and accept the result of free and fair elections in order to deserve the joy of victory.
“But every democracy must resist the abuse of power, manipulation and rigging in the election. We have areas that even if we are not in the same political party, we can collaborate”.
Those who accompanied Mr. Tinubu to the meeting include governors Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun state, and Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti state. Others are Audu Ogbeh, a respected national leader of the ACN, and the party’s National Publicity Secretary, Lai Mohammed, among others.
CPC stalwarts who attended the meeting include, former minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Nasir El-rufai, former minister of works, Hassan Lawal, Senator Abu Ibrahim, the CPC governorship candidate in the 2011 election in Kaduna state, Haruna Sa’eed, and the Minority Leader, Kaduna state House of Assembly, Shehu Usman.