Chieftain of the All Progressive Congress (APC) and former commissioner for information, culture and tourism in Niger State, Jonathan Vatsa, has knocked former president, Muhammadu Buhari, for allegedly neglecting Niger State for eight years because of former military president, General Ibrahim Babangida.
General Babangida led the military putsch that ousted Buhari as then military head of state on August 27, 1985.
The APC chieftain, during an interactive session with newsmen in Minna stated that despite the overwhelming supports Buhari received from the state in 2015 and 2019, his government shut it door against the state “simply because of his unforgiving spirit against Babangida over the 1985 coup against him.”
According to him, Niger State turned out the highest votes for APC in 2015 and 2019 but regretted that what the state got in return was “total neglect” in all aspect of human development, adding that “the only benefit the state got from Buhari’s government were failed promises and abandoned federal projects all over the state, including the ones he awarded and those he inherited.”
The former publicity secretary of the party in the state, who condemned the attitude of the former president against the people of the state because of his personal hatred for one person, pointed out that “in all elections that Buhari contested in the country before becoming president, Niger State has always given him maximum votes, it is, therefore, unfair for him to treat Niger state the way he did in his eight years rule.” The former coordinator, public affairs to former governor, Abubakar Sani Blello, disclosed that over 15 federal projects including roads in the state both the ones he (Buhari) awarded and the ones he inherited were all abandoned, stressing that “Niger state cannot boost of any federal government project that was completed by Buhari administration in the last eight years.
“Look at the Suleja-Minna dual carriage, the Lambata-Agaie-Bida highway, Minna-Tegina-Kontagora roads, the Kontagora-Rijau-Tungan Magajiya road, the Baro port project, the Bida Basin oil exploration and many more”, stressing that “none of these projects saw the light of the day, all because his hatred for one individual.” He stated that to further demonstrate his hatred for the state because of IBB, Buhari never paid a single state visit to Niger state in his eight years in office.
“The two times he came to the state was in Baro where he commissioned an empty port and in Sunti sugar company where he laid a foundation for a multibillion sugar company that never saw the light of the day.” Vatsa maintained that while the former president failed in his many promises to the state, including the Minna-Abuja rail line, he hurriedly awarded and paid for the Kano-Maradi in Niger Republic rail line project, saying “Buhari’s body language and his agenda made him not to have peace throughout his eight years in office.”
He appealed to President Ahmed Bola Tinubu to redress the Buhari wrongs against the people of the state by completing all the abandoned Federal Government projects in the state for the benefit of the common man in the state.