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War Of Words Ahead 2015

War Of Words Ahead 2015

“They Want To Kill Democracy-PDP
 “ They  Lack ideas”-APC
As the 2015 General Elections draw closer, the war of attrition between the two leading parties: Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the All Progressives Congress (APC) is beginning to get messier.
In separate news conferences yesterday both parties poured invectives on each other, and trading blames on the worsening security and economic situation in the country.
Speaking for the PDP, National Publicity Secretary, , Olisa Metuh said the opposition APC and its leaders are hell bent on truncating the nation’s democracy through the systematic attack on  and destruction of key democratic institutions including the judiciary, legislature, security agencies and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC)
According to the statement: “For over a year, the leaders of APC have sustained attacks on critical institutions of government. They have also committed enormous efforts to fanning the ambers of violence and division among Nigerians, with the aim of destabilising the PDP-led Federal Government, weakening the institutions and truncating our democracy.
 “Nigerians are very much aware that the APC and its leaders have been at the centre of actions and utterances that have in no small measure been promoting hatred, violence and division in the polity. These are the very acts that embolden insurgency and pave the way for the ignoble design of the APC, which is to overheat the system and weaken the foundation of our nationhood, all in desperation for power.
“Sustained vitriolic attacks and campaign of calumny against the legislature at the national and state levels is at the top of this APC destabilisation programme. On many occasions, the APC has labeled federal legislatures as corrupt, accusing them of receiving millions of dollars to do PDP’s bidding. 
“It has also cast aspersions on the state legislature, calling them ‘pliant assemblies,’ with the sole aim of projecting them as compromised and unreliable. 
 “Nigerians have also witnessed the onslaughts and spirited attempts to destroy the judiciary by the APC. When they secured a favourable judgment that gave them three states, there was nothing wrong, they hailed the judiciary. However, once a ruling goes against the APC, they turn the heat on them.”
   It added: “In the same vein, Nigerians are witnesses to the constant attacks by the APC on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), which it has continued to project as partisan, compromised and incapable of delivering a free and fair election. However, the same APC described the INEC in superlatives when they won the Edo State governorship elections.”
   More so, “security agencies, especially the military, are not left out in the APC agenda of destruction. The aim, again, is to project them as weak, compromised and incapable of giving protection to Nigerians, all in their determination to undermine the PDP-led Federal Government.
   “However, it is auspicious to draw attention to the anti-democratic activities of the APC, which their leaders in their selective criticism have refused to acknowledge. 
 “For instance, what can pose a greater threat to democracy than the whimsical actions of APC governors in their states, where respect for institutions of democracy have been thrown overboard, where disdain for the rule of law has become the order of the day and the rights of the people trampled upon?
“Before all of us, democratically elected local councils (officials) in Imo State were sacked by the APC-led government of Rochas Okorocha to the disdain and chagrin of the citizens. The same scenario played out in Rivers State, where Governor Rotimi Amaechi sacked the elected chairman of Obio/Akpo local council, and Edo, where Governor Adams Oshiomhole also dissolved elected local councils before the expiration of their tenure.”
   It added: “In Edo, Nasarawa and Lagos states, our great party won seats in the local government elections only for the APC-led state governments to upturn the results in their favour. Nigerians can only imagine what will be the order of the day if the APC is in control of the centre”
   The party stressed that the Presidency and its national leadership were never involved in the gale of impeachments in some states. However, it urged its members across state assemblies “to thread with caution and be guided by due process, rule of law in the execution of their legislative duties.”
   He noted: “Just a few months ago, the APC was basking in the euphoria of their merger as well as their illusory dominance of the Nigerian political space and saw nothing wrong in the processes. It is therefore hypocritical that the same APC has turned around in condemnation simply because they are currently suffering a self-inflicted reversal of fortune.”
 
On its part, the APC through its National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed has accused the ruling PDP of being unimaginative and archaic in its way of solving national problems.
The APC who are completely against the recent request of $1billion by the Federal Government to fight terrorism stated that the PDP have not effectively complemented the military campaign against the terrorists with right political, social and economic measure.
According to him  “Between 2010 and 2014, a total of $14 billion has been allocated for defence, security and the police. This year alone, $4 billion was earmarked,” the party said. “Now, if $14 billion has not clipped the wings of Boko Haram in five years, what difference can $1 billion make if thrown into the crisis in the same old way?
   “Talking of new and imaginative thinking, it is generally agreed that the root causes of the Boko Haram crisis are deep in the years of bad governance that have created an army of unemployed youth in the north-east, which is the epicentre of the crisis,” it noted.
   “The years of bad governance have meant that many millions of youth are uneducated and unemployable, and have resulted in dilapidated infrastructure, lack of social amenities, inadequate schools and a total disconnect between the government and the governed.
   “Yet, the Federal Government that has only allocated a paltry, insulting N2 billion ($12.2 million) for its misguided ‘Marshall Plan’ for the North-East is asking for $1 billion to buy new weapons to fight Boko Haram! 
   “Imagine what a substantial fraction of $14 billion can do to the efforts to uplift the north-east, put children back to school, give the youth life-enhancing training and put the army of the unemployed beyond the reach of the extremists who recruit and indoctrinate them to kill, maim and destroy?”
   APC warned that by emphasising “military campaign alone,” government was signalling a hardening of position and foreclosing negotiation. It said: “We challenge the PDP-led government to name places in the world where terrorism was successfully defeated by military means alone. 
   “Even with some of the world’s best militaries (United States, United Kingdom and France, among others), terrorism is never successfully defeated militarily. The way to go is effective counter-terrorism, which is about winning hearts and minds, not battles.
   “This is why the National Assembly must show the highest degree of patriotism and commitment to national security by demanding how the billions of dollars thrown at the Boko Haram crisis so far have been spent, what the Federal Government wants to do with a new loan and also a comprehensive counter-insurgency plan that includes measures to tackle the socio-economic undercurrents of the Boko Haram crisis.”
Enough of PDP’s pettiness. Instead of pointing to its achievements, if any in 16 years, an inept government is blaming opposition party for everything, including things that happened before the party was formed. If they say some people are plotting to truncate democracy, why has the federal government not moved against the plotters?

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