By Festus Ahon, ASABA
GOVERNOR Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State has said Nigerians were tired of the rising insecurity and economic crisis ravaging the country under the All Progressives Congress, APC-led Federal Government.
Speaking on Channels Television’s “Politics Today” monitored by our correspondent, Okowa said the successful conduct of the just concluded Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, national convention was a pointer to the party’s readiness to rescue Nigeria from the current hopelessness that pervades the country.
Okowa said: “We need to recreate hope, we need to make them believe that Nigeria is one, that Nigeria is a united country and that there is hope for a new Nigeria.
“With the successful conduct of our national convention, we have sent the message with the right conviction to Nigerians that PDP is truly ready to rescue them.
“The rescue mission is about our country. We know exactly what we are in at the moment; there is so much crisis in everything: crisis in security, crisis in the economy and a lot of people are truly hungry.
“The number of the poor people is growing by the day and the youths are becoming very restive and they are no longer comfortable with the country they call theirs.
“When you look at all these things, with the fact that the economy is nose-diving every day and when you look at the kind of budget that is being presented to Nigerians, there is cause to worry that it is not something that can actually take us in the right direction.
“There are a lot of issues and most practically, the insecurity issue in the land, which is getting worse by the day.
“It is beginning to impact negatively on production, in terms of agricultural produce and that is not good enough for the country.
“From real insecurity, we may find ourselves in the next few years going into food insecurity and that will be the worse for the country.
“So, looking at all these, you will agree with me on the need to re-jig the pathway that we are toeing at the moment.
“It is not the best for us and I think it’s agreeable by all Nigerians that something needs to be done.
“That’s why we have presented ourselves as a credible alternative to take Nigeria back to the path of progress; to take Nigeria back to where people can begin to have for tomorrow.”
On why former President Goodluck Jonathan was absent at the convention, Okowa explained that the former president was duly invited but was unavoidably absent because of prior engagements outside the country.
Why Ayu was chosen
On alleged dominance of the party by the governors and why the leaders chose Senator Iyorchia Ayu as National Chairman, Okowa said the party looked for someone with a command structure and administrative capacity which Ayu possessed.
He said: “In the North, there was a lot of consultations with different leaders where the name of Senator Ayu was presented and finally accepted.
“The person of the national chairman comes with a very high level of integrity, high level of experience, with the necessary command structure and a reasonable administrative background that can truly help to keep the party united on the rescue mission.
“Governors as leaders of the party in their various states have the right to stick together and provide guidance for the party and I believe that we are doing our best to provide leadership and guidance to the party in the absence of a president.”
On why he thinks PDP will win the APC in 2023, Okowa said: “We are not competing with them anymore because looking through the years of the PDP and that of the APC of about six years plus, the difference is clear. Nigerians have been able to see for themselves.
“Though things were very difficult, we were able to build a foundation during Obasanjo’s administration.
“The reverse is the case in this current administration in such a manner that it is not good for our nation.
“The level of insecurity, the economy today, the naira-to-dollar situation, indeed, there are too many issues.
“We are getting to a stage now where there is a shortage of food for the middle class, not to talk of the low class.”