PDP accuses President Buhari and APC of planning to run a discriminatory government

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has accused President Muhammadu Buhari and the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) of planning to operate a discriminatory administration capable of fuelling ethnic and religious resentment across the country.

The party accused Buhari of making a statement to the effect that he would not treat every part of the country same on account of the low support he got from some areas during the last presidential polls.

Addressing a press conference Sunday evening, the PDP National Publicity Secretary, Chief Olisa Metuh, alleged that the president has embarked on witch-hunt exercise aimed at humiliating former President Goodluck Jonathan and those who served in his administration.
He said President Buhari had told a stunned audience in the United States that “constituencies that gave me 97 per cent cannot in all honesty be treated, on some issues, with constituencies that gave me five per cent,” signifying that his government would be discriminatory.

“Never in the history of our nation has a president made such a divisive and vindictive declaration. Never in the history of Nigeria has a president made such tendentious, biased and partisan statement, a blade on the chord of unity of his own country and people,” he said.
According to Metuh, president Buhari as a respected leader and the father of the nation must note the enormous damage and danger his recent partisan declaration has brought to the polity.
“We demand that the President come clear on this matter. Would this form the basis of government appointments rather than adherence to merit and the principle of federal character as enshrined in the constitution? Would this be a basis for termination of appointments, promotions and key policies in the service circle?

“Would it form the basis for distribution of infrastructural development projects and other essential interventions rather than the principle of equity and equality of federating units as stipulated by the constitution? Is this a deliberate policy by the APC or his personal stance? Are we expecting the same discriminatory policy from APC state governors?

“May we remind President Buhari that his declaration to run a discriminatory government is in clear violation of his oath of office as president wherein he publicly swore ‘that in all circumstances, I will do right to all manner of people, according to law, without fear or favour, affection or ill-will."
Metuh further expressed the fear that the president’s stance could divide the people along sectional and religious lines and may trigger a return of quest for ethnic and sectional self-determination, adding that it behooves on the president to “to moderate the political ambiance in the nation and do the needful in reassuring all sections of the nation of his commitment to be fair and just, in keeping with the oaths and demands of the highly respected office of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”

The PDP spokesman said so far, APC portends bad change as its government has failed to articulate any clear policy direction with attendant avoidable confusion and economic downturn.

He said the PDP had information that the presidency has gone into negotiations with the World Bank to secure $2.1 billion for undisclosed uses without consultations with appropriate stakeholders, the National Assembly and states governments.
“So far, bad change is that our dear nation is gradually sliding into a banana republic were the fundamental rights of the citizens are being trampled upon and where security agencies have become compromised instruments of oppression in the hands of the ruling party,” he said.
The PDP spokesman also accused the Buhari- led federal government of doing everything to humiliate the immediate former President, Jonathan and all those who served with him.

He said the PDP believed that the reason the APC administration is whittling down the independence of Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and has been trying to perpetuate the acting Chairman, Amina Zakari, in office is because they are seeking to rig the Kogi State governorship elections.

Speaking on the alleged haunting of ex-President Jonathan, Metuh said PDP would like to know if the Director of Protocol, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Hussein, was acting out a script from the presidency when he threatened the former First Lady, Mrs. Patience Jonathan, at the Port Harcourt International Airport that she would be dealt with anytime she comes near the VIP Lounge again.

Similarly, Metuh said the business community in Nigeria and indeed across the world has noted with utter dismay the disgraceful treatment meted out on some Nigerian bankers and captains of industries by President Buhari during his US visit.
“Whereas the president has the right to decide who makes his entourage on such an important official visit, which visibly excluded National Assembly leaders, economic experts and had no woman, the manner with which he shamed and walked out Nigerian businessmen sends very wrong signal to international investors and poses great threats to inflow of direct foreign investment into our country.”
Credit: Onyebuchi Ezigbo/ThisDay