Top 5 political quotes of the year [Pulse Picks 2021]
The last 12 months or so have been quite interesting on the political front.
With the 2023 general elections drawing ever closer, it is unsurprising to see politicians having a go at each other sometimes, to the pleasure of the suffering public.
Politicians have also used the menacing issue of insecurity and the biting economic situation that have plagued the country as tools to continue to vent at each other unabated.
In light of these, we've gathered for you five top political quotes of the year 2021.
Buhari's controversial reference to the Nigerian Civil War
Around the middle of the year, there was a nationwide controversy stoked by none other than President Muhammadu Buhari himself.
Frustrated with the wanton killings and destructions of government properties in the South East, most of which had been attributed to the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Buhari took to the now banned social media platform, Twitter to send a stern warning to the ever troublesome group.
"Many of those misbehaving today are too young to be aware of the destruction and loss of lives that occurred during the Nigerian Civil War. Those of us in the field for 30 months, who went through the war, will treat them in the language they understand," tweeted Buhari.
The Civil War of 1967-1970 pitted the Nigerian state against the secessionist Biafran Army of the South East and recorded heavy human casualties from both sides with the latter taking the biggest hit.
This explains why the President's threat didn't sit well with many Nigerians who interpreted his message as a declaration of another war against the people of the South East.
Following a slew of complaints to Twitter by some Nigerians, Buhari's tweet was later deleted after the platform reviewed and deemed it to have violated its rules.
Buhari, in what looked like a retaliation, banned twitter operations in the country days after.
Femi Adesina says Femi Fani-Kayode swallowed delicious vomit
Femi Fani-Kayode's defection from the Peoples' Democratic Party to the All Progressives Congress (APC) is possibly the most shocking political event of the year.
After several years of sustained antagonism and ferocious criticisms of APC, Fani-Kayode made an unceremonious return to the party he left in 2014.
Expectedly, his move was greeted with widespread condemnations from some Nigerians who hurled derisive remarks the way of the former Minister.
Even members of his new party didn't spare him as calls for the party to reject such defection swelled rapidly, given his history of well documented attacks against the person of the President.
In the wake of the controversy, Buhari's spokesperson, Femi Adesina who came out in defence of Fani-Kayode, persuaded party members and other aggrieved Nigerians to emulate the forgiving spirit of Buhari.
He likened FFK's decision to having to do the unpleasant act of swallowing one's vomit, but in this case, a delicious one.
"And come to think of it. Is it pleasant to swallow one's vomit? Nah. But that was what FFK did.
"All those foul words against the President, the APC, the government, many people in government. He has swallowed them. Delicious? By no means. Pueh! You would feel like retching," he wrote.
Pastor Tunde Bakare dares Buhari to come after him
It appeared like a trailer truck had driven a wide division between President Buhari and his running mate in the 2011 presidential election, Pastor Tunde Bakare.
The respected preacher caught the figure of a frustrated man during one of his sermons when he surprisingly declared to his congregation and everyone else who cared to listen that God has turned against Buhari.
“Get out of my way, get out of my way. This is the final warning. I loved you, I served you, I respected you, I did everything to make it work for you but you turned against me and God has turned against you. Get out of my way,” Bakare said.
Bakare and Buhari have been long-term political partners and the Man of God has been very public with his support for the President who he backed in the 2015 Presidential contest.
Bakare has since visited Buhari in his Aso Villa office, and all could be said to be fine again between the two allies.
Buhari appeared to call Bola Tinubu's bluff over zoning of APC Presidential ticket - or not?
Remember that famous Arise TV interview? It doesn't get bigger than that!
Buhari appeared to have broken ranks with the APC National Leader, Bola Tinubu when he threw a jibe at him during his interview with Arise TV.
Tinubu has been widely credited for playing an important role in Buhari's emergence as Nigeria's President in 2015.
He was also said to be instrumental in his re-election two years ago, and with the Lagos topman positioning himself to take over from Buhari in 2023, it's expected that the president will replicate the favour he once enjoyed.
For this to happen however, there's a little matter of party zoning, an arrangement that will ensure that the APC ticket goes to a candidate from the South - the region where Tinubu operates from.
When asked to comment on the topic of zoning, Buhari in an apparent shade stated that one man cannot sit in Lagos and decide for the APC, “The hope of this administration is to see APC last beyond it. Therefore, we should allow the party to decide. You cannot sit there in Lagos, for instance, and decide on the fate of APC on zoning,” he said.
This declaration sent shock waves across the political landscape as it was interpreted to mean that Buhari wasn't particularly disposed to Tinubu's presidency ambition.
This notion was quickly quashed though by the Presidency which released a statement days later to reject the inference that Buhari was referring to Tinubu.
Governor Samuel Ortom ran over one kilometer to escape assassination attempt
Benue state Governor, Samuel Ortom, was forced to put his athletic dexterity to test, or so he claimed, when his convoy came under heavy gunfire by armed militia men numbering over a dozen.
The 60-year-old Governor had visited his farm located on Makurdi-Gboko Road on Saturday, March 20, 2021 when gunmen suspected to be criminal herders, took aim at his life.
Ortom, who managed to survive the attack unscathed, later came out to give details of how he ran for more than one kilometers while the gunmen pelted his convoy with bullets.
He expressed his gratitude to God for the gift of strength and fitness while also praising his security personnel for putting up a great fight to repel the attack.
“And I thank God for my fitness to have run for more than one and a half kilometres without stopping. It means that God has given me strength and I am grateful to God," Ortom said.
Ortom has been entangled in a long-drawn battle with Fulani herdsmen, especially the criminal elements among them, whom he has accused of instigating conflicts in his state via the practice of open grazing.
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