Nigeria’s president, Goodluck Jonathan, Feb 11
2015, hosted his eight presidential media chat
since May 2011.
Read Full Text Below:-
The challenges confronting Nigeria – insecurity,
the economy, corruption, dearth of infrastructure
– were largely discussed. Here’s all he said,
compiled by me with additional information from
On postponed elections:
The president sought the understanding of the
international community over the postponed
elections. He said the kind of scenarios where
elections are postponed for the sake of
perpetuating power is not the case in Nigeria.
The president was asked why he thinks the war
against Boko Haram can be won in six weeks even
though the war had raged for six years. The
president said he has just acquired new weapons,
and gotten support of neigbhouring countries to
fight Boko Haram. He mentioned that Chad
waited for African Union approval, which they
recently got too. He also mentioned that the issue
of security is beyond Boko Haram. The president
said it runs into dangerous signals of youth
restiveness. In the next four weeks Nigerians will
see the difference in the security intervention in
the North, he said.
The president is asked where he bought arms for
the coming onslaught on Boko Haram. He said
they managed to get from other sources other
Do you have confidence in Jega to conduct the
The president said he wished Jega was seated by
his side to answer the question.
I wish Jega were here, I could have asked him to
answer whether I have confidence in him Yes
those who called for his sack may be close to me,
but they express their own opinion. More than 80
per cent of those who sponsor messages on our
behalf we don’t even know them. People use the
reschedule of election to misinform Nigerians.
I have never thought about removing INEC
Chairman, though I have the constitutional power
to do so.”
GEJ blamed his supporters for rumours about
Jega’s resignation. “I have not told anybody that I
will remove Jega,” he said. He explained that if
there are obvious reasons to remove Jega, he
would rely on “constitutional” provisions that
gives him powers to sack whoever he appoints.
”The level of misinformation, especially from
young people is high. Attempting to attack the
president is treasonable offence.The president is
protected by soldiers, not just the police. People
get carried away and make some provocative
Those who pelted my convoy during my
campaigns in the Northern part of the country
were ignorant. If INEC conducts the election
poorly, it will be on my head.”
Hate speeches and political violence by both
opposition and ruling party members.
The president explained that “some people” get
carried away by the political play and exude these
violence. He blamed aides and associates of key
political actors for the hate speeches and political
violence. He did not categorically condemn the
hate speeches or war threats or politically-
“We will make sure things are done so that
nobody goes to war,” the president said when he
pressed for categorical stance on the war threats
by ex-militants should he lose the elections. He
argues journalists have responsibility to ensure
the unity of the country.
On why he frequents churches for campaign but
never visited mosques:
GEJ responded by saying he does not receive
invitations from Muslims like from the churches.
If election would hold should the military fails to
eliminate Boko Haram in six weeks:
The presidents said the new dates are sacrosanct
and a new president would be sworn in by May
29. He argued that the goal is not to totally
eliminate Boko Haram but to make adequate
security arrangement for the election.
Missing Chibok girls:
Questioning moves to the issue of the president’s
perceived weak support especially as it relates to
the missing Chibok girls. “Just give us some
times,” he said, responding to questions seeking
the state of the girls at the moment. The
president is optimistic the girls would be rescued
with the new military collaboration with
neighbouring countries. “I believe the story would
be different in a few weeks,” the president said.
“We would recover them alive.”
I believe the story of Chibok Girls will get better in
the next few weeks, but don’t quote me. We are
working with our neighbours, we will comb the
whole of that place Partying after abduction? It’s
unfortunate that people play politics with the
issue of Chibok girls. It’s not like that elsewhere.
In other countries, political boundaries collapse in
the face of terror attacks, not so in Nigeria.
With regards to his weakened political base, the
president said “in politics, there are only
The president is asked to clarify his previous
comments that “stealing is not corruption”:
He said he made that statement quoting the
former Chief Justice of Nigeria, Dahiru Mustafa,
who explained to him that his analysis of
corruption cases in Nigeria showed that most of
such cases were theft. He argued that referring to
stealing as corruption minimizes the crime. “Ole
(thief in Yoruba) should be called Ole and given
that treatment,” the president said.
“Let us communicate properly. The word
corruption, we have abused it.”
“It is not actually my quotation. I quoted the
former Chief Justice,” as he continues to defend
his previous comments on corruption and
We have convicted more corrupt people than
ever. It is just that Nigerians are confused on
what the difference is between stealing and
The state of the N1 billion security loan and funds
confiscated in South Africa.
He said the government have not started
disbursing the N1 billion loan. With regards to
the .3 million arms money seized in South Africa,
he said the money does not belong to Nigeria,
technically. He added that the matter was in
The president is asked if he would hand over if he
loses the next election.
“If the elections are conducted and I lose, of
course, another president would be sworn in,” the
president said. He argued that Nigeria is more
important than any individual.
The president is asked what he will do differently
if he wins.
He said most of the problem he had in the past is
related to perception and not concrete. He did
not really say what he would do differently.
The president is asked to comment on his
opponent for the 2015 general election, Buhari.
The president responded it was an unfair
question. He however mentioned that he has
recieved more criticism that Muhammadu Buhari
on social media.
The president is asked if he has confidence in
INEC as presidently constituted.
He answered saying he appointed everyone at the
management level of INEC.
In his closing remarks, president Jonathan
assured Nigerians that elections would be
conducted and a new president sworn in on May
29. He argued that it is better for INEC to
conduct an election everyone would be happy
Chat ended 20:19, 11th February, 2015.
Nigeria’s president, Goodluck Jonathan, Feb 11