NIGERIANS are getting sick and tired of the petty politics being played by the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and the main opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP) over the execution of projects that have existed through the regimes controlled by both political parties.
Quite a number of projects started by previous regimes have been completed and commissioned by President Muhammadu Buhari government. These include the Abuja – Kaduna standard gauge railway commissioned in July 2016, the Abuja Light Rail, (July 2018), the new terminal of the Port Harcourt International Airport (26th October 2018), among others. These otherwise happy occasions were beclouded by verbal shootouts between the social media gladiators of the APC and PDP claiming the exclusive glory for their accomplishment.
It all started when the Buhari regime assumed office in 2015 and started grumbling that it inherited “nothing” from PDP presidents. He first made this claim in Daura in September, 2016 after prayers to celebrate the Id El Kabir. He repeated it several times, and even Vice President Osinbajo and several other regime officials picked up the refrain.
Following the rejuvenation of the PDP and the emergence of its presidential candidate, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, its media hands have been answering back, challenging the APC Federal Government to show “one” project it started and completed. They, in turn, are claiming exclusive credit for all the projects Buhari has commissioned, insisting that they were started, financed and nearly completed by the President Goodluck Jonathan government.
We do not see the need for these claims and counterclaims. They are meant to confuse gullible Nigerians. Government is a continuum. It is an unending relay race. It is normal and desirable for one regime to start projects while another succeeding government completes them. That the Buhari regime chose to complete projects it met is commendable. It is a positive departure from the past tendency to abandon projects conceived by previous regimes, thus depriving the people from benefiting from them.
We commend Ministers Babatunde Fashola and Chibuike Amaechi for acknowledging that previous regimes left a lot of projects which are now being brought to fruition. We need this spirit of sportsmanship for governance to continue unobtrusively for the good of the people irrespective of which political party started or finished public projects.
It is public fund (not party or individual resource) that is being put to use. Political parties in power should face their mandates and leave the people to judge their performances. Nigerians know those who are serving them well and will no longer be deceived by noisy and empty propaganda.
The newfound continuity in the execution of government projects will eventually end the spate of abandonment of government projects, and Nigeria will be the better for it.