2023: I’m ready, prepared –Tunde Bakare

• Says Buhari may end up without legacy both as head of state, president

2023 presidency: Why I want Buhari’s job –Tunde Bakare

Running mate to President Muhammadu Buhari in 2011 election and founder of Citadel Global Church, Tunde Bakare, yesterday, declared his readiness to run for the Presidency in 2023.

This is as he urged President Buhari to work hard to leave behind legacies that would outlive him.

<p class="has-drop-cap has-vivid-red-color has-text-color" value="<amp-fit-text layout="fixed-height" min-font-size="6" max-font-size="72" height="80">To him, President Buhari still had enough time to rewrite his name on the sands of time, if God delivered him from ‘bad counsels’ and ‘bad counsellors’ that have prevented  him from seeing and acting on realities in Nigeria other than the lies that he’s being fed by bad counsellors around himTo him, President Buhari still had enough time to rewrite his name on the sands of time, if God delivered him from ‘bad counsels’ and ‘bad counsellors’ that have prevented  him from seeing and acting on realities in Nigeria other than the lies that he’s being fed by bad counsellors around him

Bakare, who stated these while featuring as  guest on Arise Television morning show, said, as a Nigerian citizen, he had the  right to run for any elective office if he chooses to do so and 2023 will not be an exception.

“Every Nigerian citizen who has the aspiration to add value to this country is at liberty so to do. It is my fundamental right to run if I chose to. I mean every word I spoke. I cannot fold my hand or say well, let me continue to watch. No.

“My support for former president Goodluck Jonathan then was more or less based on what the late Obafemi Awolowo said that days would come when someone from a minority will rule this country which happened in the time of Jonathan.

“I am a citizen of this country, born and bred here by the grace of God and I intend to contribute my quota. It is like a matter of life and death. If we have the right people, I will support them. And if I offer myself and people support me, so be it. I am not taking those words back. I have something to offer my country.

“But it is all left for my country to say we want you because I cannot impose myself on them. I challenge right-thinking patriots to rise and let us join hands to fix our country. If God designs it that I will be the 16th president in 2023, I’m ready. I’m prepared. I have no word to impress anybody. All I have is quality service and God who took David from the sheepfold to shepherd the nation of Israel has trained me for over 30 years to be able to add my value to this country,” he said.

He alleged that bad advisers have prevented President Buhari from seeing and acting on the realities in Nigerian streets.

“One of the things I pray for President Buhari is that God should deliver him from wicked counsels and counsellors who tell him life is sweet and that everything is going fine, but without giving him the reports from the streets,” he said.

“In 2015, it seemed as if we had a long time. But, four years has gone and we are into the second year of the second term which is going to end soon. Time is going and anyone who is thinking of legacy, it is the best time to go into action – maybe two, or three things which people may see and say in the days of President Buhari, Nigeria took a giant trip in these three areas.

“Without that, it will just be like he came twice – first as military head of state and second as democratically elected president –  without much being ascribed to him as achievements of his administration.

“President Buhari still has enough time to leave behind an enduring legacy. He can still do a lot between 2021 and 2022 because 2020 is already running out,” he said.

#EndSARS protests, Your bullets may drive them off the streets, but your bullets cannot pierce their spirits or puncture their resilience. ― Tunde Bakare

Serving Overseer of the Citadel Global Community Church, formerly known as Latter Rain Assembly, Pastor Tunde Bakare said yesterday that the #EndSARS protest was a tip of an iceberg saying any attempt to resolve the issues must go beyond the surface to excavate the underlying factors that led to the protest.

Speaking during the State of the Nation Broadcast, Bakare said that no degree of brutal repression of protesters can quench the flame of protests in the hearts and minds of the Nigerian people.

His words: “Your bullets may drive them off the streets, but your bullets cannot pierce their spirits or puncture their resilience.

“Our overarching challenge is systemic governance failure which, over the decades, has worsened the living conditions of Nigerians. As a result, although the Special Anti-Robbery Squad has been disbanded, the spirit of SARS continues to prowl unchecked.

“For too long, the Nigerian people have been subjected to a less than desirable nation. For too long, the citizens of our country have been served insecurity, poverty and underdevelopment. For too long, our people have been denied access to the basic goods that make for a decent standard of living. We have been denied quality education, good healthcare, quality roads, access to electricity, and much more.

Bakare, who is also the Convener of Save Nigeria Group, in his message titled: ‘The building blocks of nationhood: A blueprint for the new Nigeria’ said this at the church’s new auditorium in Oregun.

He, however, appealed to the youths, whose patriotic spirits have been brutalised and traumatised by a repressive Nigerian state, not to lose hope.

He said: “I salute the courage of this unbreakable generation; I salute the resilience of every Nigerian youth, named and unnamed, who has stood up to be counted in this momentous era. I remember at this time the heartbreaking tales of extortion, torture, rape, and murder that drove our young people to the streets in the first place.

“Our hearts bleed at the memory of the peaceful protesters at the Lekki Toll Gate who were shot and killed on Tuesday, October 20, 2020, by the Armed Forces of the Nigerian state as they held up the Nigerian flag. May their souls rest in peace and may God comfort their families.

“In like manner, we also remember those unsung heroes of the Nigeria Police Force who, despite being part of an institution that has the worst reputation for corruption and ineptitude in the Nigerian public sector, serve with remarkable professionalism and bravery, sometimes doing so at the cost of their lives.

“I encourage them to keep hope alive because the Nigeria of their dreams, the New Nigeria, is within reach. I appeal to the older generation to speak up at this point in defence of our hard-earned freedom. This is not the nation our founding fathers lived and died for. This is not the nation we fought for in the trenches of pro-democracy movements.

“This is not the nation we hope to bequeath to our children. We will build this nation, not upon the altar of the blood of our young people, but on their visions and aspirations. I am confident that we can end the brutalisation of our people, put an end to the State-Aided Robbery Squad, and begin the process of nation-building.

“It is time to turn the stumbling blocks of our past into stepping stones to our future. Let us, therefore, arise to build a great nation, that all who have died in the quest for a new nation will not have died in vain, and that the Nigerian dream will become the Nigerian reality.”

Bakare also acknowledged the efforts made by the government to address the protesters’ demands, saying “government must move from commitment to full compliance in the implementation of the 5-for-5 demands of the EndSARS protesters and in overhauling our policing architecture.

Above all, I strongly recommend that President Muhammadu Buhari should ensure that those who ordered armed soldiers to fire on innocent citizens are fished out and made to face the full weight of the law. The officers who carried out such wicked acts should also be prosecuted under international legal standards.”

Nigeria at 60: We are in a nation where the blind leads the seeing — Tunde Bakare

The General Overseer of Citadel Global Community Church, Tunde Bakare has stated that we are in a nation where the blind leads the seeing.

He made this known at an annual conference, The Platform, organised by Covenant Christian Centre in Lagos, on Thursday.

Speaking at the virtual event hosted by Poju Oyemade to commemorate the nation’s 60th independence anniversary, Bakare said no nation can make considerable progress when mediocre people are at its helm of affairs.

According to him, there was a need to ensure that the right people are in positions of leadership in order to put the country on the right track.

He said:

“If you compare our performance with the nations that began this journey with us — nations like Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, and South Korea — they’ve left us behind. We are still in the woods and are yet to come out,” he said.

“We thank God we are still a nation and we trust God that as we dialogue this afternoon and others bring their ideas to the table, those that are leading us will begin to put the best of us in strategic positions to move our nation forward.

“No nation anywhere can survive or embark on predictable progress when mediocres are in charge.

“I’m not sure and I’m not limiting the Almighty and I hope this will not be seen as blasphemy; I’m not sure the Bible contemplates Nigerian leadership, because the Bible says when the blind leads the blind, they all end up in a ditch. But we’re in a nation where the blind leads the seeing.”

When asked what could be done to address the challenges bedevilling the country, he explained that there was a need for a change of orientation.

“I think we put the cart before the horse and whenever you put the cart before the horse, there is motion backward. We need to put the horse before the cart. We need urgent national redemption and until that takes place, we are just wasting our time,” he said

Bakare also berated President Muhammadu Buhari for failing to deliver on his campaign promises.

“The present government led by President Muhammadu Buhari announced three critical things as their focus or agenda as they were coming into power: security, diversified economy and fight against corruption,” he said.

“If you look at the security archictecture, you will know something is wrong when our soldiers from the battle line are releasing videos of ‘we’re tired.’

“When he took the mantle of leadership and he relocated as it were, he took the power base of the military to the war front and we all had a sigh of relief that something was going to happen, but today, there’s so much bloodletting and bloodshed. I’m not sure we have really won the battle against terrorism in our country.”

On why he has not led a protest against the recent fuel subsidy removal as he did during the previous administration under Goodluck Jonathan, he said the protest at the time was for the “voiceless”.