Buhari and the third term agenda

by Aisha Yesufu

That we are once again talking about third term is a testament to Nigeria’s lack of seriousness as a Nation.


How can an issue that was supposedly laid to rest over twelve years ago raise its head again? That, sadly is the story of Nigeria.

One step forward and 100 steps backward. A country where there is motion without movement.


With the recent moves typical of what we have seen repeatedly from this administration it is imperative to take note of the happenings around us.

Typical of this administration they test the waters and gauge the reaction of citizens. First they start with talk which they pretend is not from them and before you know what’s happening some people from the party begin to make certain proclamations and before we fully recover from that, the main business is unveiled.

Let’s take for example the issue of President Muhammadu Buhari running for a second term. It started as a rumour.

Then there was agitation in some quarters and before we knew what was happening, a Minister started wearing caps with caption of the second term ambition of the President.

Finally, the President declared he would be running for a second term. Same man who said he would only run for a term if he was elected into office!

Running for second term was within the President’s right and he was not breaking any law or contravening the constitution.

It was only his honour and integrity that was at risk and the president had repeatedly shown that when it comes to integrity he definitely did not have what is needed to maintain one.

Integrity is extremely costly and the President had since given up pretence of paying the price.

So the President going against his words and running for a second term was taken by the citizens in their strides.

Just another broken promise to deal with! This third term agenda is an entirely different case. It is unconstitutional.

It is unlawful and it is something every patriotic Nigeria must stand up and raise their voices against.

We must not be enslaved in our own country. It started as a rumour that seem laughable at best and the next thing it is being reported that an APC member has gone to court to file a suit for the court to direct the National Assembly and the Attorney General to remove the constitutional clause hindering the President and Governors from running for third term.

It seems dismissible knowing fully well the courts cannot grant such request. The courts cannot amend the constitution or direct that it be amended.

Think back on all the other laughable issues that turned out to be true and we then didn’t have the energy to laugh or do anything about.

Many have come out to say that the President has denied that he would run for a third term.

He stated that he swore by the holy book to uphold the constitution and the constitution recognize only two terms. What does that even mean? So if the constitution is amended and it now says he can run for endless terms then he would still be adhering to his oath, right?

With this rubber stamp legislature that we have where the Senate President has been reported to have said that he would do anything for the President does anyone see how easily the constitution can be changed?

Or is it the State assemblies that are mostly in the pockets of State governors who would also like endless terms that would stop the move?

Beyond that, when did the words of President Muhammadu Buhari amount to anything?

How many times has he repeatedly said one thing and done another? Did the President not say he would not run for election again after his 2011 defeat? Did the President not say he would only run for one term if he was elected into office?

Did the President not say he would not pay subsidy that it was a scam? Did the President not also say he would not have an office of the First lady? What did the President say about medical tourism and also the Presidential jets?

What has he done instead? With all of these the President has shown he is not believable and anyone who believes him does so at his or her peril.

As for this third term it is in the best interest of this government to make it a figment of imagination otherwise it might be the straw that breaks the camel’s back. In the meantime every Nigerian must be ready to keep fear aside and stand for Nigeria.

Nigeria belongs to us all and we must be ready to defend it. We cannot continue to live in fear within our country.

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