…Don’t blame Senate President for your failure, Saraki allies tell APC
The National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and former Lagos State Governor, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, has accused Senate President , Dr. Bukola Saraki and Sokoto State Governor Aminu Tambuwal, of defecting from the APC because the party refused to give them the automatic ticket that they wanted from the party, rather than on national interest.
Tinubu, in a statement made available in Lagos on Sunday and personally signed, alleged that Saraki and Tambuwal, along with the other defectors wanted automatic tickets and sharing of the national wealth which the governing APC could not guarantee.
The APC leader in the statement entitled “They Go Away Because We Go the Right Way”, said the defectors “left the party to return to a motley agglomeration that would promise them what true democracy could not: automatic tickets, sharing of the national wealth and other offices and privileges.”
Tinubu asked the people to go beyond the debate on the numbers in the Senate or House of Representatives, saying that “we must pull back from the shallow headlines to recognise that something fundamental is at stake.
“Nigeria is undergoing a historic transition. Sometimes awkwardly, tentatively, yet inexorably, we nurture political and governance reform. We steadily close the door on the old malpractices that have caused a rich nation to reside in the tenement of the global poor.”
Speaking specifically on Tambuwal’s defection, the APC leader said: “Governor Tambuwal’s exit can be distilled to one cause. He covets the presidency.
However, he had not the stomach to challenge President Buhari in a primary. Tambuwal felt further insulted that he would be compelled to face a direct primary just to retain the governorship nomination.
“But for the promise made by the PDP headliners like Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike that he would have the PDP presidential nomination, Tambuwal would not have left. His exit had nothing to do with governance of the nation. It was about forging a personal ambition predicated on the defeat of progressive reform not the advancement of it.”
On Saraki, Tinubu said: “Much the same for Senate President Saraki. Returning to the PDP, he harbours dreams of the Presidency but Tambuwal’s ambition will dwarf Saraki’s when the two collide.
If Saraki had remained in the APC, he would be unable to reclaim his Senate seat let alone the Senate Presidency. He thus bolted because he lusts for the Presidency but was promised by the PDP, at least, a return to his position in the Senate.”
He added: “For Saraki to talk about lack of governance is for him to deny who he is and the position he holds. This man stands as Nigeria’s Number three citizen. Clothed is he in ample power and influence.
If he saw areas where government and the nation needed help, he could have easily applied his energies to these areas. He could have drafted legislation and easily got laws passed.
“However, no progressive enactment bears his name for he cared not for progress. He has been more focused on changing the rules of the Senate to favour himself and changing the order of elections so as to coincide with his selfish designs.”
The statement reads further: “The defections of some people from the APC have generated sensational headlines and exaggerated talk as to what their departures foretell for the APC, the party to which I belong.
Some have predicted the demise of the APC. Those who hope for our decline will be disappointed by the inaccuracy of their desires. The days, months and years ahead will bury such errant forecasts for these predictions are born more of bitterness than of objective analysis.
“Much of the attention has centered on which party now controls this or that state and which party maintains a majority in the National Assembly. These considerations are important to members of the political class and the electoral calculations of the political parties.
But these calculations cannot be all there is. We must be careful not to reduce our horizon to a mere accounting of elected officials moving from one party to another,” he added.
But the Chairman, Senate Committee on Navy, Senator Isah Misau and his counterpart in the Committee on Banking, Finance and Other Financial Insitutions, Senator Rafiu Ibrahim, have advised the APC and its leaders to desist from looking for scapegoats for the failure to fulfill their promises to the electorate by constantly blaming Saraki.
Misau and Rafiu in a statement, on Sunday, stated that the APC leaders have continued to whine about what Saraki did or did not do to ensure the Buhari government failed without caring whether it was reasonable to believe that one single individual who had been continuously assailed by the government would at the same time be in a position to ground the government.
The senators said, “APC leaders are being clever by half. They have spent most of the last 38 months harassing Saraki and sponsoring media attacks against him.
Now that the man has been vindicated by the courts and he has decided to leave their party, they have devised another propaganda stunt to start heaping the blames of their failure to bring positive change to Nigeria on Saraki.
“For three years of the APC administration, former President Goodluck Jonathan was the scapegoat they blamed. Now that it dawned on them that nobody is listening to that tale by moonlight again, their propaganda machinery has shifted focus to Saraki as the new man to blame.
These are characters who cannot take responsibility for their inability to provide good governance as they promised.
“Must these people blame somebody all the time? Were they elected to bring in positive change or to shift blames? It is irresponsible for people invested with popular mandate to always look for somebody to be held responsible for their failure to fulfill their promises and give expression to the mandate they were given.
“Instead of concentrating on how to use the next six months before the general elections to hasten the completion of infrastructure projects, enunciation of policies and initiation of programmes which can improve the standard of living of the people and ameliorate the consistent failure of the last three years, the APC is now led by demagogues who seem not to care if they bring the entire country down.
“The new leadership of the APC have continued to advertise the inability of the party to manage victory, their penchant for violence as a way of saving their faces and their lack of the much needed temperament to wield together a country with diverse culture, ethnicity and religion like Nigeria.
“When they continue to blame Saraki for their failure, was the man responsible for their failure to appoint ministers for the first five months of the administration when the economy was just straying without direction?
“Is he responsible for the constant demarketing of the economy in international circles by the President of the country? Is Saraki responsible for the refusal of the government to prosecute its members indicted of corrupt practices, thereby destroying its anti-corruption campaign?
Is he responsible for the high level incompetence and lack of capacity which sign-post the activities of the government?
“Is Saraki responsible for condoning the inability of the security agencies to appropriately respond to the security challenges which are now pervasive across the country? Did Saraki set up the ‘government within government’ which has continued to ground the administration?
“We can go on and on to query the logic of this APC blame game. However, we need to warn them to stop this cheap antics and face the real task of governance.
Nigerians did not elect them to be giving excuses. Very soon, they will have to give account to the people and nobody will listen to the constant thrash about Saraki this, Saraki that.
“If the best strategy the APC ideas team can come up with on how to pre-occupy Saraki and prevent him from rallying his fellow party members in the PDP for victory in next year’s general election as well as prevent him from pursuing his legitimate ambition in the 2019 elections, then they need to return to the drawing board. Saraki is unfazed and he is not even bothered”.