WhiteHouse trip was symbolic and substantial – Ajimobi
Oyo state governor, Abiola Ajimobi, has finally decided to publicly speak on his recent trip to the USA. I’m not surprised he is speaking about it following the emergence of a picture he took with Obama on social media. I also predicted – and warned him against – erecting billboards with the picture in Ibadan metropolis. He got the advice and decided to speak instead. So, here is what he’s saying.
He described President Muhammadu Buhari’s recent trip to the WhiteHouse as symbolic and substantial.
Ajimobi told Abiodun Oluwarotimi: “Symbolic in the sense that people have now seen a man that for the first time in the history of Nigeria, won an election that is considered very free, technology-driven and very fair. Not only that, [Buhari is] the first opposition candidate to displace an incumbent president in Nigeria through the ballot box, not through the bullets. When it comes to symbolism, here is a man that is seen as president at a time that Nigeria needs integrity. He is seen as a president with the highest level of integrity. He came and is seen as incorruptible at a time that Nigeria is seen as a very corrupt country.
“Symbolically, he is also seen as a man with a track record of commitment particularly in an environment where security is threatened as a result of the insurgency of Boko Haram. He is a man that is summarily seen as an efficient and timely leader. He is a man that is required now to take Nigeria to the next level and take it out of its terrible situation. So those are the symbolic elements of the visit.”
He revealed that as someone who studied in the USA in the 70’s, he could see that USA is a willing partner for Nigeria.
“It was overwhelming both in terms of discussion and the openness with which they are saying, just give us your wish list, we are there for you. It has never happened before. During each meeting, you would see the positive tributes being given to Mr. President and to
Nigeria. America does not normally say this. They do not pretend, they are very forthright, and Mr. President has made Nigeria proud with his own integrity. Even, US Vice president, Mr. Joe Biden, told him in one of the meetings that: ‘Look, you must strike now that the iron is hot’. For me, it summarizes the substantive nature of the visit,” Ajimobi said.
Ajimobi added that with the trip, Nigeria has begun the process of regaining its lost glory.
“The process has started. Nigeria is being supported by the America now and I think with Mr. President, the goodwill is reuniting Nigeria and the US. It has started to yield result,” the governor said.