FORMER Nigerian Military President Ibrahim Babangida says the present crop of frontline politicians are not committed to nation-building.
Babangida said this on Friday during an interview on Arise TV’s ‘Morning Show.’
“I do believe in the future of Nigeria, but Nigerians are not believing in the future of their country, they create it and destroy it.
“Till today, unfortunately, the political class are not really into this seriously and say how do we build a nation,” he said.
Babangida said priority should be given to qualification over ethnicity when choosing Nigeria’s next president.
“Either we want to practise democracy the way it should be practised, or we define democracy on our own whims and caprices,” he said.
“If we are going to do it the way it is done all over the world, you allow the process to continue. It is through the process that you will come up with a candidate that will rule the country. His beliefs and qualifications should be considered before he throws his hat into the ring, regardless of where he comes from,” he said.
The former military head of state said military leaders were saints compared to the corruption happening under the democratic dispensation.
“Well on that, you can’t compare it with the facts on the ground now. You can say it. From what I read, from analysis, I think we are saints when compared to what is happening under a democratic dispensation.”
He said while he served as military head of state, he sacked a governor for misappropriating less than N313,000.
“I sacked a governor for misappropriating less than N313,000.
“Today, those who have stolen billions and are in court are now parading themselves on the streets. Who else is better in fighting corruption?” he said.
Babangida became military president after taking over power from Muhammadu Buhari on August 27, 1985. He introduced economic policies such as the Structural Adjustment Programme (SAP), which altered the course of the nation and liberalised the economy.