Malam Nasir el-Rufai, the Governor of Kaduna State has described Vice President Yemi Osinbajo as the number one confidante of President Muhammadu Buhari and has the respect of all the governors in Nigeria across party lines because of the way and manner he handles the affairs of the National Economic Council (NEC), which he chairs.
El-Rufai also attributed the success recorded in the Paris Club refund that was deducted in 2005 and finally paid to all the states as well as the bailout to 27 states who were unable to pay salaries to the vice president.
According to a press statement from the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity (Office of the Vice President), Laolu Akande, this was made known by El-Rufai, when Professor Osinbajo visited Kaduna state in continuation of his consultation with All Progressive Congress (APC) stakeholders and delegates across the country.
The statement also said that with about a week to the presidential primaries of APC, the vice president has continued to receive commendations from state governors, their deputies and stakeholders under the party’s platform for his efforts at improving governance and dedication to the progress of the country.
What the Governor of Kaduna State is saying
El-Rufai, who described the vice president as a man of intellect, brilliance, unifier and detribalized Nigerian, said that he worked closely with Osinbajo to draft the party’s strategy and manifesto.
- He said, ‘’The number one confidante of the President (Muhammadu Buhari), and “has the respect of all the governors of Nigeria, across party lines, because of the way and manner he steers the affairs of the National Economic Council.’’
- Noting that the VP had visited the State on several occasions, Governor El-Rufai said the Vice President “is not just here because he is running for president. He is here because he has a close affinity with the government and people of Kaduna State. I want those that don’t know, our party leaders and delegates, to know that Prof. Yemi Osinbajo has always shown uncommon love for the people of Kaduna State.”
- Going further he said, ‘’I have worked very closely with the Vice President in the last seven years. Before then, we worked as senior officials of the party to craft the party’s strategy, as well as manifesto. We jointly wrote the manifesto of the party together as members of the strategy committee of the party.
- “He is a man of intellect, brilliance; a unifier, a detribalized Nigerian; who has shown us leadership as chairman of the National Economic Council.
- “It was under Vice President Osinbajo’s leadership that our Paris Cub refund that was deducted in 2005 was finally paid to all the States, and we are all beneficiaries. It was under his leadership that recommendations were made to bail out 27 states, that, in 2015 were unable to pay salaries. I can go on and on to list the qualifications and virtues of Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.”
- While urging the delegates to vote for the best person that will take Nigeria to that promised land, Governor El-Rufai added, “In Kaduna State we are people of honour. So, please remember that the future of Nigeria is at stake. Nigeria is at a critical crossroads and the choices we make in 2023 will, to large extent, determine whether this country progresses rapidly to achieve its manifest destiny or not.
- “We must put all our sentiments and personal interests aside, and vote for the best person that will take Nigeria to that promised land.”
Osinbajo who is one of the aspirants for the presidential 2023 election under the All Progressive Congress (APC) is on a nationwide consultation with stakeholders and delegates of the party.