It is not a constitutional provision that one must visit the United States of America before becoming the president of Nigeria, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar , an aspirant, has said.
The Vice President from 1999 to 2007 told the BBC Hausa service that he could be Nigeria’s president without visiting the USA.
According to the Punch newspaper, Atiku stated this on Saturday during an interview with the British Broadcasting Corporation Hausa Service.
He was asked how he intended to be Nigeria’s president without visiting the US.
He asked whether it was a constitutional provision that one must visit the US before becoming president.
“I can be president without going to America,” he said.
Atiku also commented on a statement credited to his former boss, ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo, that he (Atiku) would not be President while he was alive.
He stated that Obasanjo was not God, saying that he didn’t lose sleep when he learnt that Obasanjo made such a statement.
According to him, if it is God’s will for him to be president, nobody, not even Obasanjo, can challenge God.
The ex-VP also confirmed that he was denied a US visa when he wanted to travel to that country.
He said he was told by the US that his application for visa was denied because it was passing through administrative process.
He also spoke about a house in the US said to belong to him and auctioned by the government of that country.
Atiku said the house belonged to one of his wives, adding that, “All my wives own houses and that particular house is not mine. It belonged to one of my wives. She sold the house and was never auctioned as it was reported.”
He further spoke on the rift between him and President Muhammad Buhari, saying the President could not control happenings in the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC)
He said that was one of the reasons he left the party and returned to his former party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), where he was a founding member.
“After 2015 general elections, I met the President. I told him that activities of the party have been crippled and there is a need to restructure.
“Also, I advised the President on issues concerning his administration. I said to him, ‘If things continue like this, I will quit’, but Mr. Buhari turned a deaf ear and remained mum.”
Read more: Punch