Minister for Women Affairs, Jummai Alhassan, said on Wednesday that she would resign as Minister to support former Vice President Atiku Abubakar if he decides to contest in 2019.
In an interview with the BBC, Aisha Alhassan has said that she would dump the cabinet if Atiku will contest the 2019 elections.
She said: “Firstly, what I hoped for even when I was working as a civil servant – when I didn’t even join politics – because His Excellency Atiku has been my godfather even before I ventured into politics.
“After I joined politics, he continued being my godfather. You know everybody has a reason for a political relationship with somebody. Secondly, Baba Buhari hasn’t told us that he wants to recontest in 2019.
“I can assure you that if Baba Buhari tells us today that he wants to re-contest, I swear to God I will go to him and tell him that ‘Baba, I thank you for giving me the opportunity to work under you as a minister. But Baba as you know, Atiku is my godfather.’ That’s if Atiku wants to contest, but as we speak, he (Atiku) hasn’t told us he wants to contest”
The minister said she would resign her position as a minister if Atiku declares his intention to run because she would be a “hypocrite” if she remains part of the federal cabinet as her loyalty is still with the former vice president, being her godfather.
“We hope he (Atiku) will contest in 2019, that’s why I said so. But he’s yet to say so himself. Once he declares, I’ll do just what I said. If Atiku comes out to contest and I remain part of Baba Buhari’s cabinet at the same time, then I become a hypocrite. I’m not known for hypocrisy, ungratefulness and betrayal.
“If today I say I have nothing to do with Atiku, even Baba Buhari himself will doubt me. He’ll say I’m a betrayal and I’m not like that,” she added.
Asked if it is not too early to begin campaign for 2019, Alhassan said she was not in any way campaigning for Atiku at this time.
“This thing I said was when we paid him (Atiku) sallah visit. Is it in his presence that I’ll go and campaign? The issue of campaign hasn’t come up. Even me that people have been calling to come and contest, I told them that it’s not yet time, but it’s now time to work for the people.
“This is the work of those opposing me. They’re saying I should be sacked as minister. In the first place, I never expected the ministerial position. It is God that gave me, and if today I’m asked to leave, it is God’s time that has come to an end. I have fate and I believe that whatever happens to me is destined by God.”
She also said Buhari would not sack her because of the issue.
“Do they think Baba is also mad like them? They’re busy sending all sorts of things via phones that once Baba sees them, he’ll sack me. He won’t sack me as minister because of this issue, except if I commit an offence.
“Besides, I’ve been doing my job as minister to the best of my knowledge. I also defend the APC government, my political party. Baba is my leader and the president of my country. I have been respecting him and I’ll continue to respect him as a good man and someone with integrity.
“So, those saying I’ll be sacked will be put to shame. Even if I’m sacked, it’s because my time is over and nothing else. I didn’t seek for it in the first place; it’s God that gave me.”