Nigeria’s Opposition political party, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has described the six years of President Muhammadu Buhari administration as the worst in Nigeria’s history as an independent, sovereign state.
The party stated this in its message to Nigerians ahead of the 61st independence anniversary.
Addressing newsmen at the party’s national headquarters, PDP national publicity secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan said the push by the Buhari-led administration “to sink our nation to the precipices is evident in our daily lives; the lies, injustices, violations, state-backed violence, impunity, nepotism, treasury looting, harsh economic policies and accommodation of terrorism, but our nation has continued to survive by the resilient spirit of Nigerians.”
Accusing the All Progressives Congress, APC-led government of making life difficult for Nigerians, the party expressed hope in the ability of the country to bounce back stronger.
He said: “It is painful that all the gains made by our nation since independence in 1960 and especially during the 16 years of the PDP in office, including the entrenchment of national unity and cohesiveness, freedom and personal liberty of citizens, rule of law, credible elections, justice, equity, fairness and economic progress; the very elements of an independent state, have all been reversed by the APC and the Buhari Presidency.
“The Buhari Presidency and the APC have on all fronts taken our nation back to the pre-independence days with associated bondage mentality and frustration resulting in many losing faith in the system and leaving our country in droves within the last six years.
“Is it not an irony that our nation is celebrating independence in the face of subverted elections, brazen crackdown on the opposition and dissenting voices as well as other suppressive acts including the muzzling of free speech as witnessed in the ban on Twitter in Nigeria?
“Is it not also an irony that as we celebrate independence, thousands of our compatriots are falling victims to extra-judicial killings, arbitrary arrests and illegal detention in dehumanizing cells; which underscore the horrible situation under President Buhari and the APC, as even profiled by reputable international organizations including Amnesty International (AI) and US Department of State?
“How can we celebrate when the APC government has no answers to the murdering of our youths by security operatives as witnessed in the EndSARS protest killings of 2020 and, where those who demand for accountability in governance are being hounded, harassed and framed?
“Is it not painful that under President Buhari, our nation has been opened up to terrorists, bandits and kidnappers, who are wantonly killing our citizens while their known apologists are enjoying official cover with one of them even holding office as cabinet minister?
“The PDP holds as unpardonable that President Buhari has failed to secure our nation. In spite of the genuine suggestions by patriotic Nigerians including the PDP, his administration has remained lethargic and assuming a helpless situation.
“Nevertheless, our party celebrates our gallant troops who are making huge sacrifices to defend our nation, despite the daunting challenges they face.
“On the economy front, how can we celebrate when President Buhari and the APC have in a space of six years, wrecked our once robust economy and turned Nigeria into the poverty capital of the world, where over 82.9 million Nigerians can no longer afford their daily meals.
“How can we celebrate when the APC has plunged our nation into economic slavery with over N33.1 trillion accumulated debt, a 33 per cent unemployment rate, collapse of productive sectors and a weakened naira from the N167 to a dollar handed over to President Buhari in 2015 to a dismal N576 to a dollar today?
“Instead of ending its corruption and seeking ways to revamp the economy, the Buhari administration is busy doctoring the books with false indices that have no bearing of any sort to the harsh reality on the ground.
“Indeed, this is not the way to go. The incontrovertible truth is that there is no hope in sight under the APC and that is why there are no drums on the streets to celebrate Nigeria at 61.
“If anything, Nigerians are using the occasion of the 61st independence anniversary to further strengthen their resolve to take back their country from the stranglehold of the APC, come 2023.
“The PDP appreciates the confidence reposed on our party by Nigerians to lead the charge to rescue our nation in 2023. Our party acknowledges the flurry of goodwill and solidarity messages coming from Nigerians across board as further demonstrated in the massive interest by citizens in our ongoing registration exercise.
“The PDP congratulates Nigerians on the nation’s 61st independence anniversary and urges them to use this year’s occasion to further consolidate on our unity and resilience for the task ahead”.