A foremost female politician and businesswoman has thrown her weight behind the former Vice President in his bid to rule Nigeria.
With the 2019 Presidential elections yet to commence, a prominent female politician, Hon. Fatee Mohammed, has thrown her weight behind former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar.
Hon. Mohammed, a top Nigerian businesswoman, entrepreneur and humanitarian, is an aspirant to the House of Representatives and the Director-General of Atikunation, a volunteer campaign group for Atiku Abubakar 2019 Presidential dream.
Hon. Mohammed who is a staunch supporter of the Atiku presidential dream, spoke to Pulse in an interview on the need for Nigerians to key into the Atiku dream. She also opined that the former VP is the only man who can unseat incumbent President Muhammadu Buhari come 2019.
She also spoke on the position of women in Nigerian politics.
Do you think it is detrimental in the long term that women have to adopt an almost male persona in order to be taken seriously in politics?
In the first place, women do not even have to adopt a male persona in order to be taken seriously in politics. There are female managing directors of big organizations who are wives, mothers and very feminine, but because they are good at their jobs, they attain such heights. A woman who is a good politician can also attain great heights in politics.
What challenges would you say a woman is likely to have to face and overcome in order to be validly elected governor or president in a country like Nigeria?
Challenges in politics are same for male and female; it does not recognize gender. Any determined female politician who wants to be a governor will certainly overcome the usual hurdles and will be elected governor and even president.
As a strong supporter of Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, and for the fact that Nigeria has always been unlucky with leaders that are authoritarian and domineering, would you like to give an insight into his personality that seems to be confusing some people?
That question makes me happy because it gives me an opportunity to erase the negative impressions people have about our principal, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar.
Atiku is really a man that is passionate about the welfare of youths and women; he is an industrialist par excellence; his economic policy is evident and I know that when given an opportunity, he has what it takes to transform Nigeria.
A Southerner has been elected the substantive chairman of the PDP. Meanwhile, there is the speculation that the new helmsman's emergence may not be favourable to Atiku's presidential dream. Do you share this view, and how exactly do you think the pendulum is going to swing in that regard?
I am happy you call it speculation because that is what it is. May I remind you that party’s presidential candidate will have to be voted by the party delegates and not nominated by the party chairman?
That is the rule. Besides, the new PDP chairman is a man we trust. He has been tested and he has the support of every one of us.
On a personal note, how do you deal with difficult people?
I’d say I’m naturally a very blunt person so I don't mince words in speaking my mind. I’m a react-on-the-spot kind of person but I guess age is calming me down. I’m a good manager too. I’m very good at managing people no matter the nature.
How do you ensure that, on the Atiku campaign task, your team is 100% committed to your strategy and the general rules, given that it is easier to buy loyalty than raise a loyalist?
Well, I’m happy I have a very dedicated team who would not be bought for a pot of porridge. We are men and women of proven integrity. Also, Nigerians are presently at the point where they will refuse to sell their birthrights.
Many people are suffering, the economy is terrible, parents have lost their jobs, businesses are dying, etc. People are eager to return to their comfortable past.
Still, on loyalty, I’m confident what used to work in the past will definitely not work this time. So, loyalty is hard to buy in this kind of situation that we are in.
What is the most significant change that you think an Atiku presidency will bring about in Nigeria if elected president in 2019?
Atiku is our next president, Insha Allah. He will bring the positive change we are yearning for. Our economy will return to its number one position in Africa. There will be a restructuring of the nation, job creations, stable electricity and affordable health care, and many others.
As a businesswoman and an entrepreneur, how do you stay ahead of the competition given that the terrain is saturated?
To the glory of God, as a businesswoman, I am someone with a special unique selling point. So, that keeps endearing us to our customers. As an entrepreneur, I try as much to stay true to my passion of caring for the people in my own little ways. I do not give room to distractions.
The PDP and the Atiku camp obviously are in talks now. What would you advise the bargaining power between both parties should be like so that everyone is happy?
What do you think should be a serious politician's influencing style?
A serious politician’s influencing style is not necessarily a style but talking about the person of Atiku Abubakar, I’d say he is unique. He is very compassionate, a lover of fellow Nigerians irrespective of tribe and religion, a successful businessman, a man so passionate about the wellbeing of the youths and women of Nigeria.
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