APC, PDP, LP Chieftains In Heated Debate Over Nigeria’s Economic Woes

Tanko Yunusa, Niyi Akinsiju and Ilemona Onoja on Channels Television’s Politics Today programme on December 7, 2022

 

Chieftains of the All Progressives Congress (APC), the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the Labour Party (LP) were engaged in a heated debate on Nigeria’s crippling economy and dwindling fortunes on Wednesday.

LP’s spokesman Tanko Yunusa, Niyi Akinsiju of the APC and Ilemona Onoja of the PDP clashed on Channels Television’s Politics Today.

 

 

Akinsiju said the President Muhammadu Buhari administration in May 2015 inherited debt from the PDP government of 16 years but the APC government has been able to deliver despite fall in the price per barrel of crude oil.

On the other hand, Onoja said the PDP handed over an economically stable country to the APC than it inherited from the military but the APC has bastardised the Nigerian economy.

However, Yunusa concluded that the PDP’s failure gave the APC a chance in 2015, adding disappointingly that the APC has doubled the mismanagement of the country in the last seven and a half years since it has been in government.

Since Nigeria’s return to democracy in 1999 after years of military rule, the PDP has produced three Presidents (Olusegun Obasanjo, Umaru Yar’Adua and Goodluck Jonathan) for a cumulative period of 16 years. The APC took over in May 2015 with the election of Buhari, a former military head of state.

 

A photo combination of former Presidents Goodluck Jonathan and Usman Musa Yar’Adua.
A photo combination of former Presidents Goodluck Jonathan and Musa Yar’Adua.

 

File: Buhari and Obasanjo

‘PDP Left A Hollow Economy’

Akinsiju, a member of the APC Presidential Campaign Council for Bola Tinubu and Kashim Shettima, insisted that the Buhari government has not done badly, noting that Tinubu and his running mate will consolidate on the economic gains of the present administration if they win the February 25, 2023 presidential election.

READ ALSO: NJC Reinstates Justice Ofili-Ajumogobia As Judge Of Federal High Court

According to him, PDP left a hollow economy when Buhari came into power in May 2015 but the incumbent has managed to stabilise the economy.

“When this party (APC) came into government, the PDP left a hollow economy, a hollow government and because we have a Buhari in place, we stabilise the economy.

“We are at 21.09% inflation and we met 9.6% but there was no COVID-19 pandemic in 2005 August when we recorded the highest possible inflation rate in this country – 28.21%…And we are talking at a time when the price of crude oil per barrel was moving up. In 1999, it was $19/barrel. By 2005, it had moved up to more than $60/barrel.

“We are managers of an economy that is impacted by global headwinds and there is little we can do than to adapt and deploy our own creativity and we have been able to do that since 2015 when we inherited $63bn debt from the PDP government. Today, we are talking about $102bn debt all put together. Please, subtract $63bn from that debt,” he said.

 

This combination photo shows the Presidential candidates of the Labour Party, Mr Peter Obi (L); All Progressives Congress, Mr Bola Tinubu (C); and Peoples Democratic Party, Mr Atiku Abubakar (R).

 

APC, A Monumental Failure – Atiku’s Man

Onoja, a member of the Presidential Campaign Council for Atiku Abubakar and Ifeanyi Okowa, however, disagreed with Akinsiju, saying the APC has been a party of sorrow, pain and confusion marred by maladministration and bad governance.

He also faulted the cash withdrawal limits of the APC government amid the implementation of a currency change, saying the policy is doomed to fail, lead to job loss and throw several millions of people into poverty.

“In 1999, Nigeria’s GDP growth was 0.9%. 2000 – 5%. 2002 – 15.3%. This economy grew under Alhaji Atiku Abubakar as chairman of the National Economic Council. For the APC for seven and a half years, we are talking 3% growth that your population growth outstrips. How? In their (APC’s) private moment, the failure that keeps them up at night is so monumental.

“The PDP handed over to the APC a much better country than it inherited from the military. And what has the APC done to that country? It has bastardised it, ripped it to shreds, taken food out of the mouth of our children, taken education from our youths, has taken safety and security from our parents, and has taken healthcare from all of us,” he said.

APC, PDP Are Siamese Twins – Obi’s Ally

On his part, Yunusa, the chief spokesman for the 2023 campaign of LP’s Peter Obi and his running mate, Datti Baba-Ahmed, said both the PDP and the APC are Siamese twins when it comes to economic failure and maladministration.

“If the PDP has done so well during its eight years, the APC won’t have come to defeat it. It is because of the mismanagement of resources that we have that time. The APC has come up and doubled the mismanagement.

“The National Bureau of Statistics said 133 million Nigerians are in abject poverty, how else can you describe a failure of a government? Both of them left debt for Nigeria but in Obi’s case, he left N75bn in Anambra after leaving office,” he said.

Atiku, a former Vice-President; Obi, a former Anambra State governor; and Tinubu, a former governor of Lagos State are frontline candidates for the 2023 presidential election which has been described by analysts as a three-horse race.

‘Nigeria Is Collapsing’: Obi Campaigns In Taraba, Vows To Reverse Poverty

Obi is one of the leading presidential candidates in the 2023 general elections. Photo: @chude__

 

The 2023 presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP), Peter Obi says Nigeria is collapsing very fast with the worsening statistics of people living in poverty.

He also said only Nigerians can take back their party from the ruling class who have continued to ensure that despite the huge potential of the country, its people continue to live in poverty.

Obi made the statement on Wednesday at the Jolly Nyame Stadium in Jalingo, the Taraba State capital, during his presidential campaign in the state.

He said, “Nigeria is collapsing and it is doing so very fast. We have 133 million people in poverty and Taraba is no exception. It is happening here where we have millions of people who don’t know where the next meal will come from. That is what I and Baba-Ahmed wants to reverse.”

Also, Obi’s running mate, Datti Baba-Ahmed said, “Nigeria is waging a war; that war is not between tribes, it is not between faiths – it is between the good people of Nigeria and bad governance and that war we must win.”

READ ALSO: APC, PDP, LP Chieftains In Heated Debate Over Nigeria’s Economic Woes

They promised stakeholders in the state that if voted into power, they will not govern the country from Abuja but rather from the states where the potential both human and capital of the country are located.

2023: Atiku Woos Osun Voters, Says PDP Govt For Greater Good

Atiku Abubakar speaks during a PDP presidential rally in Osun State on December 7, 2022.

 

Ahead of the 2023 general elections, the Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP) presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, has wooed Osun voters, saying the PDP government is for their greater good.

He stated this on Wednesday during the PDP presidential campaign rally attended by the party’s National Chairman, Iyorchia Ayu; Osun State Governor, Ademola Adeleke; among other governors, chieftains and supporters.

According to Atiku, the objective of the PDP is to end the current challenges of insecurity, disunity, and economic deprivation, among others.

READ ALSO: 2023: I Won’t Vote Any Of Atiku Or Obi If I Am Not Contesting – Tinubu

Urging the people of Osun State to massively vote for his party, the former Vice President said, “A Federal Government controlled by the PDP and a state government controlled by the PDP in Osun State is to the greater good of Osun people.”

“Our only objective is to make sure that the current challenges of insecurity, disunity, economic deprivation, lack of jobs for our young men and women and of course the future of this country through restructuring can be achieved.

“I assure you that I am going to start doing them from day one. It means empowering Osun State with more resources and authority to do what needs to be done.”

The PDP candidate pledged that his administration will invest in healthcare, infrastructure, and industrialisation among others.

Atiku’s remarks come a day after the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu said that he won’t vote any of his counterparts if he weren’t contesting the 2023 general elections.

Our Election Will Be Free, Fair And Credible – Buhari Tells West African Elders

FILE: Buhari at the third ministerial review in Abuja on Monday, October 17th, 2022. [email protected]

 

President Muhammadu Buhari Tuesday reiterated once again that the 2023 general elections would be free, fair and credible, as manipulations would not be allowed in any form.

The President spoke at State House, Abuja, while playing host to West African Elders Forum Pre-Election Mediation Mission, led by former Sierra Leonean President, Dr Ernest Bai Koroma.

“Thank you for accepting to do this service for our sub-region,” the President told his guests, citing off-season elections held in Anambra, Ekiti and Osun States, as pointer to the fact that the Federal Government would allow people to choose leaders they want.


READ ALSO: Chatham House: APC ‘Window-Dressing’ Tinubu – Dele Momodu


“That right is guaranteed,” President Buhari affirmed. “We are settling down, and making progress. People should vote whoever they want, in whatever party. We shall not allow anyone to use money and thugs to intimidate the people. Nigerians know better now, they are wiser, and know that it is better to dialogue than to carry weapons. Elections are even more difficult to rig now.”

Former President Koroma, who led a team made of Fatoumata Tambajang, former Vice President of The Gambia, Dr Mohammed Ibn Chambas, former Special Representative of the Secretary General of the United Nations, and Ann Iyonu, Executive Director of Goodluck Jonathan Foundation, said they had met with stakeholders across the parties, civil society, and Independent National Electoral Commission, among others, “and we commend you for making it clear both locally and internationally that the elections would be free and fair.”

He commended President Buhari for not listening to voices that may have tried to convince him to seek a third term in office, against the laws of the country, noting that “other countries look up to Nigeria for direction.”

“When we had issues in Sierra Leone and Liberia, it was Nigeria that came in to stabilize the system,” the former President said.

He urged the Nigerian leader to look into other areas of concern as raised by the stakeholders, including security, and issues that may cast doubts on the clarity and credibility of the elections.”

APC Has Failed Northerners, Muslim-Muslim Ticket Won’t Work – Shagari

A former Deputy Governor of Sokoto State, Mukhtar Shagari, has said that the All Progressives Congress (APC) has failed Nigerians and its Muslim-Muslim ticket strategy for the 2023 general election won’t get its desired voter turnout in the northern region of the country.

“The Christians in this country, especially in the North felt slighted, they felt insulted when APC decided to go with Muslim-Muslim ticket,” he said during a live appearance on Channels Television’s Politics Today programme on Tuesday.

Shagari, a former Minister of Water Resources and member of the Board of Trustees of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), said if APC presidential candidate, Bola Tinubu has a Christian wife, Oluremi, it is only okay for to choose a Christian running mate and not a fellow Muslim in the person of former governor of Borno State, Kashim Shettima.

Mukhtar Shagari made an appearance on Channels Television’s Politics Today on December 6, 2022

 

He described as an insult, the same-faith ticket of the APC, adding that Nigerians and Christians will reject the ruling party in the forthcoming presidential election.

READ ALSO: I Won’t Vote Any Of Atiku Or Obi If I Am Not Contesting – Tinubu

“The APC has failed Nigerians in every aspect you can think of. In every aspect you can think of, APC has failed Nigerians, particularly in the North where people are now kidnapped and ransoms have to be paid and people are now being killed. Lack of employment all over the country and so on.

“They simply think that both the Christians and the Muslims in this country are stupid. So, they decided to come out with the Muslim-Muslim ticket, thinking if they do that, everybody in the North-West, in the North-East and the rest of Nigeria will jump at it but Nigerian people are wiser, they know what they want: they want a government that will change their lives for the better,” Shagari said.

The PDP BoT member further described as disappointing, Tinubu’s outing on Monday at the Chatham House in London, the United Kingdom, saying that Nigerians want a leader who can relate with them, answer their questions and clear their doubts and not one who delegates his allies to respond to questions directed at him.

2023: Again, Buhari Pledges Credible Polls

Buhari says he is committed to a free and fair election in 2023. Photo: Presidency.

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has again reiterated that the 2023 general elections will be free, fair and credible, as manipulations will not be allowed in any form.

The President made the comment while playing host to West African Elders Forum Pre-Election Mediation Mission, led by former Sierra Leonean President, Dr Ernest Bai Koroma at the State House in Abuja.

READ ALSO: Peter Obi’s Manifesto Offers Nothing, Contains False Statistics – APC

Making reference to what he described as the successful conduct of off-season elections held in Anambra, Ekiti and Osun States, Buhari stated that he would allow people to choose the leaders they want.

According to a statement released by the Special Adviser to the President, Femi Adesina, people should vote for whomever they want, in whatever party. We shall not allow anyone to use money and thugs to intimidate the people.

He expressed a conviction that elections are even more difficult to rig now, as Nigerians are now better informed and know that the advantages of dialoguing, outweighs carrying of weapons.

In a similar development, the President received a delegation of political, religious and business leaders from Gombe State who visited him in his office, to show appreciation for his role in the discovery of oil in commercial quantity in the Kolmani area of the state.

Briefing his visitors, Buhari said in spite of what his critics may say, his administration has made progress in stabilizing the security situation in the country, reviving the economy and fighting corruption.

Describing the visit as a morale booster, the President noted that he was simply doing his job.

Going down memory lane, the President narrated that serving as Petroleum Minister for over three years in the 1970s, the feasibility study was developed, believing it would further stabilize the polity and so for the oil find, the group should rather be congratulated.

Meanwhile, Governor Mohammed Inuwa Yahaya of Gombe State assured that the project will enhance the nation’s socioeconomic fortunes, create jobs, as well as benefit farmers.

2023: I Won’t Vote Any Of Atiku Or Obi If I Am Not Contesting – Tinubu

This combination photo shows the Presidential candidates of the Labour Party, Mr Peter Obi (L); All Progressives Congress, Mr Bola Tinubu (C); and Peoples Democratic Party, Mr Atiku Abubakar (R).

 

The presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, has said that he won’t vote for any of his counterparts if he weren’t contesting the 2023 general elections.

Tinubu specifically said he won’t vote for Peter Obi of the Labour Party (LP), and Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) if he weren’t on the ballot.

The former Lagos State governor stated this in an interview with BBC News on Monday shortly after his appearance at the Chatham House in London, the United Kingdom.

Asked if he would vote any of Atiku or Obi if he weren’t contesting, Tinubu said, “None, because they are not as competent as any other person out there. They have no track record, none of them is qualified except me.”

READ ALSO: At Chatham House, Tinubu Delegates Gbajabiamila, El-Rufai To Answer Questions

The APC candidate also said those criticising his source of wealth were driven by envy.

According to him, his wealth came from investments in real estate.

“I am not denying my wealth. I was the most investigated, the most accused governor in the opposition for eight years and since I left the office, I have not taken any government appointment, no government contract,” he said, adding that he doesn’t share any of Lagos resources with the state government.

PHOTOS: LP’s Peter Obi Embraces APC’s Uzodimma In Imo

Obi and Uzodimma locked in a warm embrace on December 6, 2022 in Owerri. Photo: ChannelsTV/ Eyitope Kuteyi

 

The 2023 presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP), Peter Obi; and Governor Hope Uzodimma were locked in a warm embrace in Owerri, the Imo State capital on Tuesday.

The two politicians met coincidentally at the Sam Mbakwe Airport in Owerri. Uzodimma arrived in the state from Abuja while Obi was in Imo for a presidential rally.

At the airport, Obi, a former Anambra State governor, briefly exchanged pleasantries with Uzodimma, a stalwart of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and one of those championing the agenda of the party’s presidential candidate, Bola Tinubu in the South-East geopolitical zone.

[READ ALSO] 2023: Soludo, Obi Embrace In Awka

After the brief encounter, Uzodimma moved to his destination while the LP presidential candidate moved to the Kanu Nwankwo Stadium in Owerri, the venue of his rally.

See more photos:

 

 

Peter Obi’s Manifesto Offers Nothing, Contains False Statistics – APC

A photo combination of LP candidate, Peter Obi and his APC counterpart, Bola Tinubu.

 

The recently released manifesto of Labour Party’s 2023 presidential candidate, Peter Obi offers nothing refreshingly new to Nigerians but “fallacies and false statistics”, the All Progressives Congress (APC) has said.

The Director, Media & Publicity of APC Presidential Campaign Council (PCC), Bayo Onanuga, in a statement on Tuesday, also said Obi’s manifesto is a poor imitation of the programmes of the current APC-led administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.

Obi had released his 62-page manifesto over the weekend. Tagged ‘It is Possible: Our Pact with Nigerians’, the manifesto was anchored on seven thematic areas: security, production, institutional reforms, the industrial revolution, infrastructural development, human capital development, and robust foreign policy.

READ ALSO: Tinubu Delegates Gbajabiamila, El-Rufai To Answer Questions At Chatham House

However, Onanuga, in the statement, said, “After perusing the document which is very high on graphics and demagogic rhetorics and short on substance, we have come to the conclusion that the document is empty and vacuous.”

“The document which is titled offers nothing refreshing to Nigerians and comes across as total anti-climax. The subtitle ‘Action Plan’ was shamelessly parroted from Asiwaju Bola Tinubu’s manifesto.

“As expected, Obi’s document contains fallacies and false statistics.

“Obi claimed China moved 740 million people out of poverty. He understated the achievement and was silent about the period it took the Chinese Communist party to achieve this. China moved close to 800 million people out of poverty and it was achieved in 40 years. This makes the present APC government’s plan to move 100 million of Nigerians out of poverty in 10 years, more realistic than Obi’s rhetoric tends to suggest.

“One of the fallacies contained in the document, which Obi has often repeated to his followers, is that Nigeria is a failed state. We wonder whether the Labour Party candidate sometimes bothers to check the meaning of a failed state and whether the country he dreams to govern falls into the mould of Yemen or Somalia, where institutions of government have lost total control of their societies,” the statement added.

The APC PCC also said Obi’s policy document has exposed him as “ill-prepared for the titanic task of governing a country the size of Nigeria”.

Obi, a former Anambra State governor, with large following by youths, is in the 2023 race for Aso Rock’s top job alongside frontline contenders like APC’s Bola Tinubu and Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Major polls have put Obi ahead of Tinubu and Atiku but the days ahead of the February 25, 2023 presidential election remain heavily pregnant.

Court Clears Accord To Contest 2023 Elections In Rivers

A file photo of a court gavel.
A file photo of a court gavel.

 

The Federal High Court sitting in Port Harcourt has struck out a suit by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), challenging the eligibility of Accord, its governorship candidate and running mate to contest the 2023 general elections in Rivers State.

The court struck out the case for lack of jurisdiction.

The presiding judge, Justice Stephen Daylop-Pam, in a ruling on Tuesday also struck out a separate suit by the PDP against all the National Assembly candidates of Accord for lack of jurisdiction.

The PDP in the suit prayed the court to declare that Accord and its candidates are not entitled to participate in the 2023 general elections in respect of the elective positions into membership of the Senate, House of Representatives and state House of Assembly for any of the constituencies in Rivers or to nominate, sponsor or field any of the defendants as candidates in the forthcoming 2023 general elections, having failed to hold valid primaries for the nomination of its candidates, as required by law and the guidelines of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

READ ALSO: Court Sentences Akwa Ibom YPP Guber Candidate To 42 Years Imprisonment

But Justice Daylop-Pam, who did not go into the merit of the matter based his judgment on the recent decision of the Appeal Court in Lagos and Rivers states which revealed that no court has jurisdiction to hear any case filed by another political party bothering on internal party affairs of another political party.

The judge insisted that any attempt by him to interfere in the matter after the appellate court had taken decision on a similar matter will amount to rascality and thereby upheld the objections of the Counsels to the defendants and struck out the suits by PDP.

Speaking to Newsmen outside the courtroom, counsels for Accord, the governorship candidate, its running mate and National Assembly candidates hailed the judgment as victory to Accord and democracy.

Also speaking, the governorship candidate of Accord in Rivers, Dumo Lulu-Briggs expressed happiness that justice was not denied at last.

He said the court has put a stop to every meddlesome of PDP into other political parties in the State just as other Accord members hail the judgement.

However, counsel for PDP, Dike Udenna refused to speak to journalists after the judgment.

Atiku Attends Debates, Sowunmi Slams Tinubu For Shunning Invitations

A photo combination of Atiku Abubakar and Bola Tinubu.

 

A Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship aspirant in Ogun State, Segun Sowunmi, has slammed the All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential candidate for shunning debates organised by media organisations.

Sowunmi, during a live appearance on Channels Television’s Politics Today on Monday, said the PDP presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar doesn’t shun debates.

 

 

Noting that the former Vice President has been in the presidential race for a while, Sowunmi stated that he takes time out of his busy schedule to attend debates.

[READ ALSO] Gaffes: Alake Defends Tinubu, Accuses Atiku, Obi Of Mistakes

He, therefore, challenged the APC presidential candidate to attend debates organised by media firms once he returns to the country from the United Kingdom where he made an appearance at Chatham House on Monday.

“Atiku attends events in spite of the fact that he has been contesting for a while and when you ask him questions, he answers,” he said.

According to him, Tinubu and his team made the former Lagos governor’s health status an issue over undue publicity.

“Bola Tinubu and his team made his health status an issue when they chose to convert his knee surgery into a big event. The candidate began to go on public engagements, he was fidgeting and making mistakes that he should not make.

“If it is like that, they have to look at themselves in the mirror and know they caused it for themselves and not begin to stay in a foreign land and pretend as if all the other organisations within cannot question them. They need to come back home and start attending events.”

Sowunmi also spoke on the legal tussle rocking the PDP in his home state.

He said the case, which is before the Supreme Court, will likely be in his favour as he seeks to challenge the candidacy of Oladipupo Adebutu as the PDP flagbearer in the South-West state.

Last Thursday, Justice Inyang Ekwo of the Federal High Court in Abuja affirmed Adebutu as the Ogun PDP candidate while delivering judgment in a suit filed by Jimi Lawal, a governorship aspirant in the state.

Youth Unemployment Major Cause Of Insecurity In North-East – Peter Obi


 

The presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP), Peter Obi says the vast number of unemployed youths in the North-East region is the biggest contributing factor to insecurity in the region, as thousands of youths wake up every morning without food or shelter.

Obi stated this on Monday when he met with some North-East stakeholders in Abuja.

According to him, with the enormous amount of arable land in the North-East, the region has the potential not only to feed the country but also produce enough cash crops for export. He pledged that his administration will bring that to reality if he wins the presidential elections next year.

He said insecurity will be a thing of the past when idle youths become engaged in legal activities, ranging from agriculture to commerce which will ensure the country moves from consumption to production.

READ ALSO: Labour Party, Peter Obi Release Campaign Manifesto For 2023

Obi said, “Youth unemployment is nearing 50 per cent, so you have millions of youth in their productive age doing nothing, not knowing where the next meal will come from. With that situation, you are going to have crises; crisis of insecurity, crisis of banditry, crisis of kidnapping.

“What I and Datti (Baba-Ahmed) are promising you is number one; that we have the best combination, the best experience to start tackling issue of security and I will say this, hold us responsible. Let nobody tell you we cannot solve issue of insecurity in Nigeria, it can be stopped and done very quickly.

“We want to unite Nigeria, we want to see Nigerians being proud of their country again. We want to remove Nigeria from where it is today, from consumption to production and when you do that, you start pulling people out of poverty.”