January 2, 2024

2024: APC mum as PDP, LP dismiss Tinubu’s address as hollow


By John Alechenu

THE ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, was mum, yesterday, as the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and Labour Party, LP, pooh-poohed President Bola Tinubu’s New Year address.

While the PDP said the president’s speech was a harvest of deceit, empty promises, and false claims, the LP said it lacked empathy for citizens.

Efforts to get the APC National Publicity Secretary, Felix Morka to comment on the criticisms of the opposition parties were yet to yield results at press time.

Tinubu’s address, a harvest of empty claims -PDP

Describing Tinubu’s speech as unpresidential, uninspiring and amounting to a waste of valuable time as it did not address any of the critical issues plaguing the nation, National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Mr. Debo Ologunagba, said Nigerians were dismayed as the President deployed rhetoric and failed to address the critical issues.

Ologunagba said: “The president failed to address critical issues of insecurity, decayed infrastructure, comatose manufacturing and productive sectors; crushing 28% inflation rate, continuing plunge of the Naira, alarming unemployment, excruciating poverty and economic hardship occasioned by the reckless, ill-advised and insensitive policies and programmes of his administration.

“President Tinubu failed to address the vexatious issue of incompetence, insensitivity, massive profligacy, unbridled treasury-looting inherent in his administration, which have put our nation in dire strait.

“More distressing is that President Tinubu had no words in his New Year address for the Christmas eve genocidal massacre of over 200 Nigerians by terrorists in Plateau State and the murder of over 5000 citizens in Plateau and other states of the federation under his watch since May 29, 2023. What manner of a President!”

Claims about working in Nigeria’s interest deceitful.

The PDP spokesman further said: “It is an unpardonable assault on the sensibility of Nigerians for President Tinubu to brazenly assert that ‘everything I have done in office, every decision I have taken and every trip I have undertaken outside the shores of our land, since I assumed office on 29 May 2023, have been done in the best interest of our country’.

“On the contrary, all decisions and actions of the Tinubu Presidency including the approval of increase in the pump price of fuel from N167 to over N600 per litre, devaluation of the naira with the consequential high costs and hardship; skewing of the 2024 budget in favour of luxury appetite of the Presidency and APC leaders without concrete policies to revive the economy and create jobs; the wasteful foreign trips with political cronies and failure to address the mindless killings across the nation cannot be said to be in the interest of our country.

“Furthermore, the undermining of the Constitution and Institutions of Democracy including attempts to emasculate the National Assembly and compromising of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, through the appointment of APC card-carrying members as Resident Electoral Commissioners cannot be in the interest of the nation.”

Speech hollow, lacks empathy-LP

On its part, the LP through its National Publicity Secretary, Obiora Ifoh described Tinubu’s nationwide broadcast to Nigerians on New Year’s Day as “appalling and hollow.

He said: “If anything, the speech conveyed to Nigerians the high level of hypocrisy, deceit and lack of empathy which has become the guiding principle of the All Progressives Congress administration which Tinubu leads.

“It is depressing to note that the President and his handlers didn’t deem it fit to include a word of comfort for the families of over 200 persons killed by terrorists during the Christmas Eve massacre in Plateau State.

“The President’s helplessness in the face of his glaring failure to address the critical issues of insecurity, decayed infrastructure, the collapse of the manufacturing and productive sectors, inflation and the naira to the dollar exchange rate which is spiralling out of control is written all over the speech.

“There was no word about the alleged massive looting of the nation’s resources by appointees and party leaders in various sectors.

“Most disturbing for us is the President’s false claim that, “everything I have done in office, every decision I have taken and every trip I have undertaken outside the shores of our land, since I assumed office on 29 May 2023, have been done in the best interest of our country”, what a despicable form of deceit.

“How does his ill-advised decision on fuel Subsidy removal without a plan to ameliorate the suffering of Nigerians translate into an action taken in the national interest?

“Of what benefit were the millions of the nation’s dwindling foreign reserves frittered away under the guise of attending the climate change summit in Dubai to Nigerians?

“How do we begin to repair the damage being done to our democratic institutions such as the Judiciary, the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC among others by the APC Administration?

“While we call for prayers for our nation in this critical point of our history, we will continue to call on the National Assembly to look beyond party lines and ensure that the spirit and the letter of our constitution is upheld at all times.”