El-Rufai lauds Bakare for persuading him to return to politics

By Olaolu Oladipo, Lagos

Kaduna State Governor, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai, has credited Lagos preacher, Pastor Tunde Bakare for his contribution to his emergence as governor of the North Western state. This is coming just as urged Nigerians to have faith in President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration, saying the President has the best interest of the country at heart and is working assiduously to restore the country’s fortunes.

Speaking during Sunday’s service at the Latter Rain Assembly where he was a guest of Bakare, he said: “I am close to President Buhari today. But I would not be here today as governor if Pastor Bakare did not make me to join the CPC.

“I was hounded after I left office, I was persecuted. I swore I would not have anything to do with government again. I was bitter. I felt that Nigeria deserves what it gets. But Pastor Bakare said no, I will pray for you and the bitterness would go.”

Describing the present era as the most difficult in the country’s history, El-Rufai called for prayers for the President and Nigeria.

He said the President was making efforts to go back to the era before oil became a mainstay of the economy but that the transition would be difficult.

He said: “This is probably the most difficult period in Nigeria’s history. 70 percent of our national income from oil disappeared. It is the worst time to be in government. 30 states of Nigeria cannot pay salaries. We are lucky in Kaduna State that we can pay salaries – perhaps because you are praying for us – but it is difficult.

“Any time I sit with Buhari I feel sorry for him because he has the fortune or misfortune of being president of Nigeria at the most difficult time. The first time the NPN had almost destroyed Nigeria.

“There is one thing about him that is a strength and also a weakness – Buhari believes in humanity. So, when he gives you something to do, he expects you to do it as he would do it. But sometimes subordinates put leaders in difficult positions.

“The Buhari I know will not do anything detrimental to Nigeria. And by God’s grace Nigeria will remain united.

“Today we have a president that has no interest in making money for himself, his family and his friends. And that is a big difference from the past.

“But I beg you to have faith and pray. With prayers, guidance…and with people like Pastor Bakare that enjoys unlimited access to the President, Nigeria cannot fail.”

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