The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to set up his government by naming his ministers, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, and advisers in the next ten days “as Nigerians did not vote for a sole administrator but for a democratic government.”
The party also urged Nigerians to join hands in prayers to save the Buhari and All Progressives Congress (APC) administration from further inaction and dithering.
But in a swift reaction, Special Adviser, Media and Publicity to President Buhari, Mr. Femi Adesina, said that the immediate past PDP government literally ran the country aground in all sectors and that the Buhari government was investing quality time and meticulous planning in efforts to first clean out their Augean Stable before for rolling out the programmes that would change the country for the best.
A statement by Chief Olisa Metuh, PDP’s National Publicity Secretary, Sunday, had said that after a careful evaluation of the first 30 days of the administration of the President and the APC, “the call for prayers had become necessary given the fact that the administration is finding it difficult to locate its bearing and even take off and face the challenges of governance at the center resulting in 30 days of all motion and no movement, a scenario that does not augur well for the polity.”
According to the statement, “the enormity of the confusion surrounding the government and party in the last one month makes it imperative for Nigerians to pray as the success or failure of the Buhari administration will not only affect the President and his party but also the entire nation.
“We urge Nigerians to join hands in prayers and offer useful suggestions to President Muhammadu Buhari and the APC because with what we have seen in the last 30 days, the present administration is finding it very difficult to get its bearings right while showing no inclination towards implementing its numerous campaign promises for which they were voted into office at the center.
“We are deeply worried that the President who promised to unveil his cabinet two weeks after his inauguration, has not been able to decide on key appointments such as ministers, Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), a Chief of Staff and advisers in key sectors of the economy.
“This is more so as the delay has brought government business in ministries, departments and agencies to a dangerous standstill with coordination of important policies vested on ministers and the SGF now in tatters while the system drifts. This situation also creates loopholes through which overzealous persons around that President can connive with unscrupulous elements in the bureaucracy to syphon public resources in addition to possibly misleading the President to violate due process by spending beyond and outside his statutory limits.
“The situation is taking its toll on the economy, which has in the last 30 days witnessed unprecedented decline with a terrifying crippling of foreign and domestic investments including activities in the money and capital market sectors. Under President Buhari, the stock market has lost over N238 billion while the All-Share Index fell by 849.87 basis points as at June 19.
“In security, apart from the directive to relocate the counter terrorism command center to Borno state and seeking assistance from foreigners, no other concrete step has been taken in the fight against insurgency which the President in his April 22, 2015 CNN interview promised to end within his first two months in office.
“Instead, the anti-terrorism effort has completely lost steam in the last 30 days, with insurgents, who had already been pushed to the verge of surrender in the Sambisa forest by the Goodluck Jonathan administration, now surging back and spreading into the country.
“In this regard, we urge the President to confront insurgency and issues of national security with all the vigour they deserve while calling for restrain from actions capable of destroying the fabrics of security intelligence. We also urge for adequate respect for all organs of internal security such as the Directorate of State Security (DSS), which is answerable to the Nigerian state and as such should not be publicly ridiculed by an aide of the President.
“In the same vein, we are disturbed by the ominous signals emanating from the atrocious attempt by the APC to undermine and appropriate the federal legislature resulting in the disruption of lawful proceedings and forced closure of the National Assembly, the symbol of our collective national identity as a democratic state. In this direction, we urge the Presidency and the APC to imbibe democratic tenets and respect the independence of that arm of government.
“Finally, while we remind the President and the APC that their campaign promises are bonds which must be fulfilled, we urge him to use the next ten days to set up his government by naming his ministers, the SGF and advisers in critical sectors as Nigerians did not vote for a sole administrator but for a democratic government”.
Mr. Adesina, in his reaction, said “It is amusing to read what the National Publicity Secretary of the defeated Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Olisa Metuh, considers a 30 days appraisal of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration.
“He wants Nigerians to join hands in prayers for the government, so that things would begin to move. What he does not know is that Nigerians had long formed such coalition. They are hands in hands, and that was what gave victory to President Buhari in the March 28, 2015 poll. They had teamed up to uproot an administration that had brought the country to her knees, and was about to tip her off the precipice. And Nigerians have resolved that never would they allow any government to divide them along regional, religious and ethnic fault lines again.”
The Spokesman of the government said further that the “Buhari administration is naturally contemplative because there was absolutely no rhyme or reason to the way PDP ran the country, particularly in the immediate past dispensation. That is why the Augean Stable is being cleaned now, and it requires scrupulous and painstaking planning. Across all sectors, our national life was devalued, and it takes meticulousness and sure-footedness to repair all the breaches. This, the Buhari administration will deliver.”
Reacting to allegations of financial impropriety, Adesina said “Metuh talks of people round the President conniving with bureaucrats to syphon money from the treasury. This must be deja vu, as it was the pastime of the immediate past administration, and the enormity of the sleaze will be evident when stolen money, to the tune of billions of dollars, is recovered, and returned to the national treasury soon.
“In the process of time, after all that is being planned by the current administration has matured, and bearing fruits, Nigerians will be able to determine who is serving them acceptably, and who has taken them for a ride. It is just a matter of time.
Concluding, he said, “Meanwhile, Metuh and his masters can only rue the missed opportunities to make salutary impact on the lives of Nigerians. They have a long road of regrets to travel.”