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Buhari Ethnicizing Government –PDP

Opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has described as “crass lack of statecraft by President Muhammadu Buhari” his statement that he would govern the country based on the voting pattern of the March 28 Presidential election results.

President Buhari had while responding to a journalists question on inclusive government said the support weight of the various regions would determine the level of attention he would direct to such regions.

This, the Peoples Democratic Party, at a press briefing, said was capable of promoting ethnic based sentiments and division amongst the people, adding that the President, who swore to protect the constitution, was culpable of such thought. “Our fear however is that the President’s stance has further divided the people along sectional and religious lines and may trigger a return of quest for ethnic and sectional self-determination”, PDP said.

The Party reminded the President of his oath of office, to which he swore to be fair to all Nigerians and demanded that he comes clear on the matter as it has sent a confusing wave of questioning amongst the citizenry.

“The burden therefore lies squarely on him 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”, PDP stated.

The party said it was incumbent on President Buhari to ensure that the burden of re-uniting the country by stating how he will implement this policy on state-craft from which the citizens expected equal treatment in the face of the law. “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 illwill; …” The party added that: “Also, while Nigerians awaited for reassuring words to promote our democracy and unity as a nation, they were shocked as they watched President Buhari unfold to the world his decision to administer the country on the basis of the voting pattern in the last general elections rather than on equity as stipulated by the constitution and his oaths of office as the President of Nigeria.

“President Buhari told a stunned audience in the US that “constituencies that gave me 97 percent cannot in all honesty be treated, on some issues, with constituencies that gave me 5 percent”, signifying that his government will 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. “President Buhari, as a respected leader and the father of the nation whose, ‘I belong to everybody and I belong to nobody’ inaugural speech brought great hope to Nigerians, must therefore note the enormous damage and danger his recent partisan declaration brings to the polity.”

According to the PDP the international engagement by the All Progressive Congress (APC) government, as was seen in the recent visit to the United States, does not in any way inspire hope as it only exposed the lack of tact in the Buhari’s administration. The opposition party then counseled the ruling APC to settle down and work, noting that excuses were not part of its promises to the Nigerian electorate when it hoodwinked the masses with its change mantra.

“However, now that the visit has come and gone, our fear is that nothing whatsoever has been learnt or gained. “What we continue to receive, as a nation, have been embarrassing disagreements, accusations and counter accusations, blames and denials on very important issues due to lack of tact and skill in the management of state matters by the APC-led administration.

                                                                                                   -Patrick Osadebamwen, Abuja

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