Alhaji Mustapha Atiku Ribadu is a Yola-based Youth leader in the political Camp of the pioneer Executive Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Malam Nuhu Ribadu, who is the philosopher behind the Black Cap Revolution in Adamawa State. In this interview with SAHID UMAR, Atiku Ribadu says the acronym ‘SAK’ used in the 2015 general elections was only a testing instrument which would not work again. He also says that if there is a prudent manager of resources at the helm of affairs in Adamawa State, the Internally Generated Revenue (IGR), would go beyond N1 billion monthly. Excerpts:
Some people are saying there’s no vacancy in Dougirei Government House, Yola in 2019, what is your take on this?
If you’re saying there’s no vacancy, it’s not right. Even the Governor can’t say that in his privacy because he knows that’s not correct.
Why are you clamouring for Nuhu Ribadu?
We are clamouring because leadership is not about getting money or awarding contracts. Leadership is about management, effective management of resources; managing what you know and what you don’t know and even what you don’t expect. So, we have seen his credibility.
When Malam Nuhu Ribadu started the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), he began it on paper without any office, staff or computer. But you can see where the EFCC is today because of the good foundation he laid; because of exemplary leadership and the effective management of both human and material resources. Since Malam Nuhu Ribadu left the EFCC, not even one, single block was added to the structures he left behind. In terms of manpower, he selected and deployed the best and this showed in his exemplary performance that was applauded both locally and globally.
During the 2015 election, he contested on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), and PDP was very strange to him. Circumstances warranted him to contest under that platform but now, he’s back to base, the All Progressives Congress (APC), where he rightly belongs. So, I believe, now that he’s back, the tenant in that house, should vacate as there is no doubt about that.
The APC was two years old in power on May 29, how would you access the administration?
Yeah, this question is ambiguous or diverse because we have the Federal, State and Local Governments. When you talk about the Federal Government, they have done a lot about security and this cannot be disputed. In Adamawa State, on the other hand, we all know, some people are owing about 14 months’ salary and we have never heard when or where the Federal Government refused to give the Local Governments their subvention. But we don’t know what is happening. Overall, I can rate Adamawa State very poor and the Federal Government will get pass mark.
Do you think by 2019 “SAK” will have impact as it had in 2015?
This “SAK” of a thing is more of a virus now; people are more afraid of “SAK” than HIV. This is because they have seen the consequences of “SAK.” For instance we have seen what “SAK” has done to the Adamawa State House of Assembly. So, people are not happy with “SAK” and detest what happened because of it. If “SAK” will work, our principal is in APC. So, we are not afraid of the word “SAK,” though we are not calling for it. Even if you call for “SAK,” I believe people will stone you with time.
So, “SAK” will not work again as it was only a testing instrument in 2015. People tested it and have seen the monstrous damage it brought as a result of the capacity of those who were brought to political offices. Some people believe because they came under a platform, they’ll get easy votes, not knowing that parties like the APC and PDP are mere alphabets or acronyms. So, you don’t expect alphabets or acronyms to bring development. You need a human being and a human being who is competent, who knows how to make things happen; not somebody who is waiting for subvention from Abuja and will sit down and decide who can get what or what can be done. No, in Adamawa State, it is very unfortunate; the state generates N600 million as Internally Generated Revenue (IGR), so they say, but if you have a prudent person managing this state, I believe, the IGR will not be less than N1 billion per month.
Will the Black Cap revolution in Adamawa State have the same impact with that of Kwankwasiya in Kano?
People always relate the Black Cap revolution in Adamawa State with Kwankwasiya Red Cap in Kano. I’m 100 per cent sure that the Black Cap revolution in the state is greater than Kwankwasiya in Kano. The major plank of the movement in Kano, former Governor Kwankwaso, had restrictions. But our own Black Cap has a national and international figure in the person of Malam Nuhu Ribadu. We have somebody with a big name with no restrictions. You saw what happened today with thousands of people who gathered without assistance or logistic help, but still they massively mobilized, came together and sacrificed their time and resources to promote a cause, you should expect something good on the horizon. I believe the sky is the limit.
In Kano, the then Kano State Governor used both government resources and influence to further the cause of Kwankwasiya. But here in Adamawa, we have neither government nor influence to peddle; not even a Councillor. All we have are class monitors; our coordinators in the 21 Local Government Areas of the state. These are the people making the Black Cap revolution thick; they are the ones moving and shaking the state and creating waves; they are the patriots making history and waiting for more history.