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Nigerians Too Hard To Govern -Buhari Opens Up | Citizen NewsNG

ByCitizen NewsNG

Nov 21, 2023



Former President Muhammadu Buhari says he did his best as Nigeria’s leader for all of eight years.

He added that he would let people be the judge on whether that “best was good enough” or not.

Buhari also said Nigerians are a difficult bunch to manage because “they think they should be” on the saddle, “not you”.

The immediate-past president spoke in an interview with NTA — his first since handing over the reins of the nation’s leadership to President Bola Tinubu in May.

“God gave me the opportunity to serve my country, but I did my best. But whether my best was good enough, I leave for people to judge,” Buhari said.

“Nigerians are extremely difficult. People know their rights. They think they should be there, not you.

“So, they monitor virtually your every step. And you have to struggle day and night to ensure that you are competent enough.”


There were rumours of a cabal hijacking the Buhari presidency from the early days of his administration.

Aisha Buhari, then first lady, lent credence to the insinuations in 2016 when she said: “You will know them (the hijackers) if you watch television”.

Buhari’s riposte to his wife’s remarks arrived in Berlin, the German capital city.

“I don’t know which party my wife belongs to, but she belongs to my kitchen and my living room and the other room,” Buhari had said.

“So I claim superior knowledge over her and the rest of the opposition because in the end I have succeeded.”

Asked during the NTA interview if he felt his government may have been hijacked by a cabal, Buhari said “it must have been”, adding however that he was not sure anyone who broke the law was allowed to “walk away”.


On the controversial naira redesign policy which led to cash shortages before and during the general election, Buhari said the move was imperative to check those who had stashed ill-gotten money.

“Whether Nigerians believe it or not, we are an underdeveloped country. And in that sort of situation, there’s materialism and sometimes ruthlessly they didn’t care how they made the money,” he said.

“I still feel that the only way I could deprive these people was just to make sure that my integrity became unquestionable… I think as a developing country we still have a long way to go.

“The motivation (for the policy) was to try and make Nigerians believe that there is no shortcut to successful leadership.”

The ex-president also spoke about how technology made him win the 2015 presidential poll after previous futile attempts.

“Instead of people expressing sympathy, people laughed at me because I didn’t have money, because I couldn’t buy influence in any form, either from influential people or others. And I said ‘God dey’. And he sent the Permanent Voter Card (PVC). Meaning you now have only one vote,” he said.

Buhari also said he was not sure he achieved all he set out to achieve as Nigeria’s leader from 2015 to 2023, adding however, that he does not miss being out of office.


By Jude Egbas


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