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Chibok girls advocate and ex minister to run for president

PICTURED: Obiageli Ezekwesili (Image: Obiageli Ezekwesili/Twitter)

FORMER NIGERIAN minister and advocate for the kidnapped Chibok girls Obiageli Ezekwesili is so run for president, she has announced.

Ezekwesili, 55, has previously held the role of minerals minister and education minister.

The co-founder of the Bring Back Our Girls campaign, Ezekwesili has fought to raise awareness of the plight of more than 200 schoolgirls who were kidnapped by terrorist group Boko Haram in 2014.

During a speech in which she declared her presidential bid today, she said: “Nigerians across the country suffer a suffocating hopelessness and despair. Our young people have in fact mostly given up they have abandoned their hopes and their dreams and many of them are leaving the country in huge numbers every day – what a tragedy.”

Ezekwesili will run as a candidate of the Allied Congress Party of Nigeria.

She said: “I bring a message of hope. A hope that a stable, progressive and prosperous society is possible. A hope that together – with the support of those in this room and the millions who will join us on this historic journey in the coming weeks and months – we shall remove any barrier standing in the way of the New Nigeria of our dream. We shall begin by pulling down the stronghold of the two failed dominant political parties – PDPAPC. We will disrupt the politics of this nation, displace the old order and replace them with a new movement of visionary and dynamic leadership that will mobilize Nigerians to build a new nation.”

In her campaign posters, the former minister states: “The time has come to disrupt our politics and rescue Nigeria from the bondage of old order politicians. The time has come for hope, progress and prosperity.”

Ezekwesili criticised the current government’s handling of rising violence in the country and pledged that it is an issue that she is determined to focus her efforts on.

“This government promised to keep Nigerians safe and secure. But crime, violent conflicts and insurgency are on the rise. We can and we will do better,” she said.

Nigeria’s next presidential election is due to take place in February 2019.

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