Festus Keyamo, Minister of State for Labour and employment, has said that Atiku Abubakar the presidential candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), lacked the experience to compete with Bola Tinubu, candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in the next year’s presidential election.
Keyamo said that Atiku had not held a public position in which he is saddled with the task of making decisions.
Atiku, a former vice president of Nigeria, is seen as the main challenger to Tinubu ahead of next February’s presidential election.
There are also other top contenders such as, Labour Party presidential candidate, Peter Obi and former Kano State governor, Rabiu Kwankwaso of the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP).
But Speaking on Friday during an interview on Politics Today on Channels Television, Keyamo said that even Obi was more experienced than Atiku in decision making, having served for two terms as governor of Anambra State.
“Atiku is not tested in making decisions; he has not held any public position where he is the head. Peter Obi is better than him; he was governor for two terms,” Keyamo said.
The Minister, who was recently appointed the spokesperson of Tinubu’s campaign organisation, said that the security breaches across the country do not indicate that President Muhammadu Buhari has failed.
He said the threat by terrorists to kidnap the President was not issue of concern.
According to him, “It is only in heaven where there will be no security breaches. We are not in heaven yet. There are jailbreaks in America, but that doesn’t mean the government has failed.”
He added that the APC was proud of the achievement and record of President Buhari while in office.
“We are very proud of Buhari’s record and nobody is dissociating us from his record,” he said.
Keymo also stressed that those criticising Tinubu for his choice of a Muslim running mate were wrong, because vice president had little powers to make important decisions, adding that critics should rather canvassed for the leadership of other arms of government.
According to Keyamo, “Those that are talking may be, they want some kind of balance of power. However, the vice president position does not balance power.
“Constitutionally, the vice president is subordinate to the president. So, if you are looking for an opportunity to balance power it is not it.
“The president gives assignment to the vice president, just like he gives to ministers, chief of staff, etc. It is on the wrong premise to agitate for the vice president, maybe they want their interest to be protected.
“If I were them; they should be asking for the Senate president, they should be asking for the chief justice of Nigeria, because the government is run on a tripod. They are presiding from wrong premise.
“Again, we have said it that political parties are designed to win elections and not to placate the ego of anybody.”