Buhari’s APC-Led Administration using EFCC, Security Apparatus to Intimidate oppositions is destroying Nigeria’s democracy – PDP laments

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Governors elected on the platform of the country’s main opposition group, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), met in Makurdi, Benue State, on Friday and gave the Federal Government under President Muhammadu Buhari the thumbs down for the troubles bedevilling Nigeria.

Meeting under the aegis of the People’s Democratic Party Governors’ Forum, PDP–GF, the state chief executives reviewed the country’s affairs and common developments and returned their damning verdict.

With Cross River’s Governor Ben Ayade absent and unrepresented, Makurdi hosted 14 of the state chief executives, including the Chairman, the Right Hon. Aminu Waziri Tambuwal of Sokoto, while one Deputy Governor represented an absentee Governor.

The 14 governors in attendance were: Tambuwal –Governor of Sokoto State, Okezie Ikpeazu –Abia, who is the group’s Vice Chairman, Udom Emmanuel –Akwa Ibom, Douye Diri – Bayelsa, Samuel Ortom –Benue, Ifeanyi Okowa –Delta, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi –Enugu and Nyesom Wike –Rivers.

Others included: Oluseyi Abiodun Makinde –Oyo State, Darius Dickson Ishaku –Taraba, Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri –Adamawa, Godwin Obaseki – Edo, Bello Mattawale Maradun –Zamfara, while Bauchi’s Deputy Governor Baba Tela represented his principal, Bala Muhammed.

In a communiqué released after the forum’s parley, the governors described the APC government under Buhari as one lacking the capacity to govern, saying the country had dire need of leadership at the Federal level.

They also canvassed an urgent tinkering of the extant Constitution to allow for the decentralisation of the security architecture of Nigeria for a system that would involve states and local governments, devolution of powers and restructuring and an allocation formula that would give more resources to the other two tiers.

The PDP governors lamented the intimidation of sitting governors by “the APC administration using all sorts of weapons like security agencies.”

It asked Nigerians to once more place their trust in PDP as the only effective vehicle to salvage the country.

According to the full communiqué from the PDP-GF:

The meeting noted and condemned the alarming drift of Nigeria which if allowed to continue, will make Nigeria a failed state under the watch of the All Progressives Congress, APC, government. They expressed deep concern and alarm at the deteriorating relations between various groups in Nigeria. The Governors were deeply worried that indeed, all our fault lines and differences are being stretched to the limit by a government that clearly lacks the capacity to govern. The meeting agreed that this has given rise to ethnic and tribal tensions, religious divisions, and various forms of social and political cleavages. The Governors concluded that Nigeria is in dire need of leadership at the Federal level to avert the looming disaster.
The meeting was similarly alarmed that security of lives and property of Nigerians are no longer guaranteed under the present government as a result of leadership incompetence and mismanagement of the nation’s affairs. While noting that Governors have a role to play in the handling of some of the worsening situations, they regret their hands are tied behind their backs as the entire coercive authority in the country is monopolised by the APC Federal Government. Time has come to take advantage of the ongoing Constitution Amendment process to decentralise the security architecture of Nigeria and involve States and Local Governments.
Consequently, the Governors reaffirmed their conviction that an urgent devolution of powers and restructuring of the country in a way that brings together various groups and tendencies in the country appears to have become imperative and timely now as Nigeria cannot afford another civil war.
We call on the Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission to send a new Revenue Allocation Formula that allocates more resources to States and Local Governments to Mr President for National Assembly’s action. It is a scandal that 21 years after the 1999 Constitution came into being, no new Revenue Formula is in place. Furthermore, the meeting called for a more transparent and accountable running and operation of the NNPC.
The meeting further condemned the intimidation of sitting Governors by the APC administration using all sorts of weapons like security agencies, unequal access to federal resources, promotion of divisions in the opposition political parties with fake promises and falsehoods. We significantly condemn the double standards that are applied by the APC–led Federal Government to intimidate PDP controlled states. To this end, we call on Mr. President to lift the so called “No flight Zone” and other intimidating tactics, imposed on Zamfara State as similar measures have not been extended to similar states with security challenges like Kaduna, Borno, Katsina, Yobe and others. This is mostly politically motivated to ensure that the Governors move over to APC.
The meeting noted that the APC has been unable to even have a democratically–elected National Executive Committee as required by the Nigerian Constitution. A Political Party that operates by military fiat with an appointed and unelected Executive Committee at ALL LEVELS from WARD to NATIONAL has no business running the affairs of our country. APC cannot deliver democracy to Nigeria; even to constitute a Board of Trustees has been an impossible task for the party since inception. It further expressed surprise that the APC is interested in playing politics and jockeying for power in 2023, when they have done an abysmal and terribly poor job of their current questionable mandate.
The Governors were distressed that Nigeria is now officially the country with the highest unemployment rate in the world at 33% under the disastrous leadership of APC. This is following on the heels of yet another feat of being the country with the second highest poverty rate in the world. For APC, it is indeed a race to the bottom.
The meeting received briefings from the National Chairman of PDP, Prince Uche Secondus, and Chairman PDP Board of Trustees, Senator Walid Jibrin, and assures Nigerians that help is on the way as the PDP is primed to offer effective leadership ONCE AGAIN to Nigeria. It enjoined Nigerians to once more place their trust on the PDP as the only effective vehicle to salvage the country.
The meeting commended the Governors of PDP–controlled states for their innovative approaches to governance in many fields especially infrastructure, education, health, women and youth initiatives and the timely delivery of developmental projects, across the country. It is these LEGACY PROJECTS being undertaken in many PDP–governed states that will be presented to Nigerians as our scorecard at the appropriate time.
The meeting thanked the Host, His Excellency, Governor Samuel Ortom for hosting the first meeting of the PDP Governors in recent times outside Abuja and for holding the Party together not only in Benue State but in the entire North Central Zone.