Presidential spokesperson, Mr Femi Adesina, believes that between the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), there is a fundamental difference of one being ‘progressive’ while the other is ‘conservative’.
He was responding to criticisms of the government and the ruling party on Saturday, December 31 during Channels Television’s special year-end programme, ‘2016 In Retrospect’, where panelists questioned what they described as lack of ideology.
A former Lagos governorship aspirant, Sinatu Ojikutu described the Buhari administration as one with good intentions but without a proper idea of how to do it.
She agreed with another guest on the show, who said that the lack of a party ideology has made governance difficult for the APC.
She went on to say: “These two parties; PDP, APC, I don’t see that much difference between the two of them in terms of what they want to do for Nigeria”
A Communication expert, Dr. Nick Idoko, however put a different perspective to the issue.
“As a nation, we have a crisis of philosophy. We don’t have a philosophy, so you can’t build parties based on philosophies or ideologies. That is why they are bankrupt,” he said.
But Mr Adesina insisted that in spite of both parties being made up of persons who had decamped at different times, “the ideologies are clear”.
“APC stands on the side of the people, PDP we can say is a little bit on the capitalist side” he added, but the guest unanimously disagreed with his submission.
Political analyst, Deola Soetan, argued that Mr Adesina had not made any correct statement as regards his description of socialism.
He maintained that being “on the side of the people” would demand modesty from politicians as displayed by the likes of Adekunle Ajasin in the past.
Commercializing social services, according to him is capitalism, “That is why during Fashola’s time you had university students paying over 300,000 naira against the philosophy of LASU (Lagos State University) when Jakande created it for poor people to come and become graduates.
“That was why you had tolls everywhere on the road. That was why you had farmers being expelled even from their lands, converting it to housing estates by land speculators.
“So I think Mr Adesina should consult books,” he said.
The panelists had also earlier described the internal crisis experienced by the APC in 2016 as a major distraction for the government.
In his comment, the President’s aide argued that a political party can have upheavals but what it does with it is what matters as such can either destroy the party or make it stronger.
However, with the series of meeting among the stakeholders in the party, there have been genuine efforts to ensure that the party sorts out its challenges.
He went on to say that the APC “will not be destroyed, rather it will come out stronger from what has happened to it”.