As Nigeria approaches the 2023 general elections, the former Chairman National Human Right Commission, Professor Chidi Odinkalu, has said the country is not fortunate to have a perfect presidential candidate.
The top three presidential candidates are Asiwaju Bola Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress, former vice president Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party, and former Anambra governor Peter Obi of the Labour Party.
Speaking on Channels Television on Monday, Odinkalu lamented that of the flawed candidates, one will be president on May 29, 2023.
He said, “2023 is not a contest between good and evil, if democratic politics is between good and evil, it will be very easy. The reality is, it is between flawed human beings, imperfect choices and that is what makes it very exciting and difficult. Sadly, that is what we are confronted with in 2023. We don’t have any perfect or ideal candidates who are before us and one of them will be the president May 29, next year.
Asked if Nigeria can afford mistakes this time around, Odinkalu said: “I don’t think we can, I hate to say this, but President Muhammadu Buhari has been a huge calamity. he has been a tragic calamity. The reality is that he actually fulfilled his promise. He promised the country change and he delivered the change. The change he delivered has taken the country back, if not two generations backward, four generations back.
“When Buhari took over power in 2015, Nigeria had about 12 million out-of-school children, according to UNESCO today, Nigeria has about 22.3 million out-of-school children today.
“Essentially he’s grown out of school children year on year by about 1.5 million during a seven-year tenure. pulse and think about what that means in the next 15 to 20 years from now. We are dealing with radicalisation and insurgency across the board. Think what 22 million gives you gives you radicalisation and pulse for a second, contemplate the consequences ….”