Princess vian Funmilayo Michael is an established real estate manager,
spanning interest in management, property development among other
issues.In this no-holds-bar interview with Emeka Monye, She speaks about
herself and her decision to pitch tent with the Presidential candidate
of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Abubakar Atiku in the 2019
Let’s get to meet you. I mean, tell us about yourself.
I am Princess Vivian Funmilayo Senami Michael from Eti-Osa Local
Government of Lagos State and a mother of 2 boys and a girl and the
National Women Leader of the Atiku Presidential View.
You are the Woman Leader of the Atiku Presidential View, (APV) What
informed your choice of Atiku to be the President of this country.
Our choice for His Excellency, Atiku Abubakar to be the President of
this great country, Nigeria stemmed from the fact that the APC
government has failed us in its entirety as a purposeful government and
Atiku we know has a good track record being a former Vice President who
knows it all and can restructure the country to its former glory.
Are you confident Atiku will defeat the incumbent, President Buhari?
Of course, I am one hundred per cent confident that our man, HE Atiku
Abubakar will definitely defeat the incumbent President If INEC conduct
a free and fair election and the security personnels do not interfere in
the election as witnessed in Ekiti, Atiku will beat Buhari hands down.
You spoke so confidently of victory for Atiku, what gives you this
Yes. We are Nigerians. Home and abroad, it’s a global village where
within 1 minute news go viral. When Buhari took over in 2015, his from
80 per cent made a down turn to 38 per cent in 2016 below average.
Even the market woman, the grass root people have seen and felt the
dismal performance of this government and are ready to change the
change. You cannot say you are fighting corruption and shut down the
economy. The people of Nigeria are fed up with this government, there
have been unmitigated hunger in the land, there is unemployment,
graduates are unemployed, insecurity in the land, deaths everywhere,
several months of unpaid salaries, undergraduates are not in schools,
lecturers are on strike for months, people have become suicidal as a
result of poverty, industries have shut down, cost of foods have
skyrocketed, investors have disappeared, records showed that 87 per cent
of Nigerians live in extreme poverty yet Buhari recently told us we
should be prepared to endure hard times. People are displaced as a
result of insurgency in the North East. We do not need to preach too
hard or too long for the ordinary citizen to understand this, hence
their desire to ensure that Atiku is elected President come 2019.
As the National Women Leader of the group, how are you going to mobilize
support for Atiku?
We are the first set of Support group to register ATIKU PRESIDENTIAL
VIEW in Abuja and as we speak we are virtually in all the States of the
Federation, to be precise 32 Statess including the FCT. The National
Coordinator of the group, Mr. Chris Sodje has travelled all the 32
States inaugurating APV in these States.
We have executives in all the States that we are present as well as in
all the local governments.
Ours is a grass root mobilization of women and youths through road
shows, matches, seminars, meetings, door to door. We have commenced
these especially in Lagos State where our women are working assiduously
Women are feeling the brunt of the failure of this government more than
anybody else and are ready to change this change from the feelings we
are getting on ground and we have told them the danger of mortgaging
their lives and their children lives for selling their PVC for the
paltry sum of N10,000 per market women. We have sensitize them on how
their PVC can define the power on the election outcome and they
understand it now.
OK, how many people should we be expecting in terms of mobilization for
former Vice President Abubakar Atiku.
Records show that about 67 million Nigerians registered for 2015
elections but only 28 million of them voted in the Presidential
election. Because Nigerians have suffered enough and have been educated
of the power to effect an outcome of the election, I am so confident
this number will multiply considerably. We are also sensitizing and
educating the electorates on voter apathy.
What critical areas will Atiku be addressing should he become the
President of Nigeria.
Atiku himself had said that he is “not a man to make grandiose promise
but a man of policies”.
Paramount is Security: Tackle the insecurity that has pervaded this
country in the last four years
Improve the Economy: Transform Nigeria in a dynamic economy
Eradicate Unemployment: Make industries running again
Education: Improve Education
Corruption: Reduce corruption
Health indices: Will be tackled.
National Gender Policy: Will uphold the National Gender Policy by trying
to reach the 35% bench mark of women and youth participation in
governance or exceed the target as South Africa, Mozambique, Uganda and
Rwanda has 56% which is the highest in the world.
Will try to improve our ranking which is 118th of 192 countries.
Why should Nigerians entrust their future on Atiku?
Being privileged to have met and know Atiku and his domestic staff,
swimming pool guy, maintenance staff, cleaners, gatemen, drivers,
electrician not a single ill word about this man from his staff. He is a
man that does not play to the gallery like his friends would say; he is
a very nice man, a man of his words, a kind and generous person, a
phillantrophist, a non-triballistic individual.
He is a man Nigerians should trust and rely on because he is a man with
impeccable record, he is well grounded and his role as Vice President
his become a reference point. And above all because he believes
education is a tool that can transform a man to success and bring him
out of poverty. A good example is the son of his driver whom he gave
scholarship to study at his American University in Yola. I have the
opportunity of meeting his staff on daily basis and knows how he has
transformed the lives of staff, junior and senior long before he came
into politics. He is a man who is ready to transform the lives of
Nigerians for the best.
How confident are you of victory at the polls?
Hmmmmm we will do our best to monitor the elections on our own part. We
can be confident if INEC is neutral, conducts a free and fair election
and the military personnel do not intimidate voters nor interfere with
elections. These aside, we are confident that our principal will come
Most people believe that politics is dirty, especially in this part of
the world, to what extent is the game dirty?
Obviously the perquisites of office that come with political position in
this country is extremely attractive. When we compare remunerations
attached to these offices compared to other countries of the world,
Nigeria’s rank first. A Nigerian parliamentarian earns N14.25 million
per month while majority of Nigerians earn $2.00 per day! This is why it
has become a do or die affair. It is therefore frighteningly dangerous
to the extent of threatening or killing their opponents. This also is
affecting our democracy as those who want to play a humble honest and
straight games are frightened out.
Do you think Nigeria has made progress since 1999 when democracy came
Of course, Nigeria has made a lot of progress except in the last four
years. The government of PDP from 1999 made great progress when our
debts of $32 billion with Paris Club and London Club was cleared.
Privatisation of many state companies that brought in $7.7billion, Non
oil Sector grew . Nigeria External Reserve rose to $41billion.
Institutions to fight corruptions were set up. EFCC, ICPC etc.,
Universities were built, school were built, hospitals were built and
equipped. Etc. Immigration Services were improved, Foreign Investments
improved and stands at $4b. etc.
Any message for the voting public.
My message is not ensure that their PVC is a passport to selecting their
own Leader. For every single vote in this election matters a great deal.
To avoid this suffering under APC, we must vote Atiku Abubakar to be
our President in 2019. Do not sell your Voter’s Card as APC has been
going out giving cash for PVC. They should exercise their right because
it is a government for the people by the people and your voting will
determine the outcome of the election. We need to change the change and
make Nigeria working again.
Do you foresee crisis in the 2019 General Election?
There has never been a violence-free elections in Nigeria. The refusal
of the President to sign the Electoral Bill is a bad omen. This is a
Bill intended to aid the smooth and credible election.
INEC must act fairly and security personnel should not interfere during
the polls. The President must act if he means well for Nigeria.
Inclosing, I will say all of us in the ATIKU PRESIDENTIAL VIEW are
working with the agility of a horse!
And William Shakespeare said “ It is not in the starts to hold our
destiny but in ourselves.”