The presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP), Mr Peter Obi, says he is going to stop the poverty cycle in Nigeria if elected.
Obi spoke on Friday at a town hall engagement with students of the University of Abuja.
The LP candidate said the elections are about the youth, and that they should seize the opportunity to make a difference.
He said the education sector will not suffer under his watch if elected, adding that Nigeria’s problems revolve around political leadership that has failed the country.
“The next election is about you, the youths, and you must seize the opportunity to take back the country by insisting that character, competence and antecedents guide your decision — not religion, tribe, region, or my turn — because in truth, it is the turn of the teeming Nigerian youths who are wasting,” he said.
“The reason my manifesto is centred on turning the country from consumption to production is to stop the country from recycling poverty.
“The only thing this country is manufacturing is poverty, and Datti and I are coming to change all that because no country grows by consumption, without production.
“Poverty is increasing in Nigeria because we are not investing enough in education and health which is what makes the difference between a rich and a poor country.
“I am assuring you that all that will stop under my watch.”
He said securing the country remains his priority, adding that his administration will negotiate with agitators and deal with those who might be uncooperative “because there can only be one government in a country at a time”.
In his remarks, Abdul-Rasheed Na’Allah, vice-chancellor of the university, commended Obi for visiting the school to inspire students.
Na’Allah said the aim of the meeting was to discuss issues around politics, adding that “intellectual engagement is the basis of political leadership”.
He said there is a need to scrutinise those aspiring to govern the nation.