Nigerians will hold Buhari accountable on campaign promises, says Labour Party
PRESIDENT-ELECT Major-Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (rtd) and his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC), have been warned not to take Nigerians for granted by backing down on their campaign promises, “as the people are expectant of real change.”
The Labour Party (LP) which issued the warning in a statement in Lagos by its National Scribe, Kayode Ajulo, said: “It is quite disturbing that even before constituting his transition committee that would examine the hand-over notes of various ministries and recommend practical implementation strategy based on his campaign promises, President-elect, Muhammadu Buhari, has already started giving the thumb-up to the naysayers.”
On his part, the General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), Pastor Adejare Adeboye, has congratulated the winners and others who contested for positions during the last elections.
He, however, reminded the winners not to forget the promises made to the electorate but honour the pledges.
He stated that there was “nothing like losers because in any contest or examination, there would always be first position, second position, third position and the opportunity would always come for those who were not able to make the top positions to contest at other times.”
He spoke at the RCCG’s Headquarters (Throne of Grace), Ebute Metta, Lagos, represented by the Special Assistant on Administration and Personnel, Pastor Johnson Odesola.
Adeboye said that going by various testimonies, the incoming government would be a listening one and so, Nigerians should take advantage of this to always speak out and remind them of their campaign promises.
Also, the Chairman of the defunct Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), Prince Tony Momoh, has said that Buhari’s emergence as president would lay a foundation for a future Nigeria where competence and merit would be respected.
Speaking with journalists while reacting to a deluge of congratulatory messages to the president-elect and the rush for appointments, Momoh said: “Those falling over themselves to reach Buhari for appointments will be disappointed. Buhari will go for the best hands without looking at party affiliations, ethnic or religious inclinations. He will go all over the world to get the best Nigerians for the job.”
Momoh described Buhari as the face of change in Nigeria. He said that Buhari should be allowed time to deliver to ensure the real change.
He also said that this was not time for celebrations. Rather, it was time to tackle challenges because in the next four years, if you do not work hard, Nigerians will stone you.
Contrary to the belief in many quarters, he described Buhari as the simplest man on earth.
He went on: “If you set out a programme with Buhari, you have to follow the rules. If you follow the rules, you are free but if you deviate from the rules, you are in trouble with Buhari even if you are his wife.
“Here in Nigeria, we obey the rules more in the breach than in the observance. Buhari will never allow that.”
Momoh likened Buhari to a guinea pig in the mould of Charles De Gaulle of France and Nelson Mandela of South Africa.
Momoh who masterminded the idea of merger of former opposition parties- CPC, ACN, ANPP and a faction of APGA- to form All Progressives Congress (APC), added: “He stands to gain little or nothing by being president of Nigeria. We will gain more from him than he will gain from us as president.”
However, the LP added: “The basis on which those Nigerians that voted for Buhari in the March 28, 2015 presidential election did and with so much passion was the belief that he could be an instrument of thorough and fundamental changes carried out with the sharpness and precision of a sound officer of the Nigerian army, though retired.
“Two very important grounds on which the General presented himself to the Nigerian electorate to canvass support are already being demolished by no other person than the retired General himself.
“While in the Labour Party, we have never hidden our support for President Goodluck Jonathan in the last election, we have resolved to accept the results and key into those promises made by the winner, since these democratically approximate the quest of the Nigerian people.
“It however amounts to taking the people for granted and being insensitive to the yearnings of the public to want to even suggest that campaign promises cannot be fulfilled by the winner at the pace desired by the people.
“Only a few days ago the President-Elect, Buhari said point blank that Nigerians should not expect miracles. The question to ask Buhari and his co-travellers in APC is that did they promise Nigerians miracles? If they did then honour demands that they perform such miracles! But if they did not promise miracles but had promised to solve real problems, then they should not expect Nigerians to fold their arms and resign to fate. Those promises must be fulfilled significantly.
“Indeed, Nigerians need to ask: before they made promises concerning building of refineries, power supplies, one meal a day, dole and fighting corruption did they not assess the realities? In what way does showing commitment to these promises make them magicians or miracle workers? Or were those promises mere campaign gimmicks? Were those promises part of propaganda and mere promo to run down the incumbent and promote the then candidate of APC?
“On our part for now, we would like to believe that the promises were not mere attempts to hoodwink an entire nation. That will be too costly for a large opposition cobbled out of the most disparate collection and shades of political ideas and hazy principles by a few deft politicians.
“But again, the utterances in the last 48 hours have again shown that Nigerians need to be on their toes so that they are not severally raped by a bunch of power desperadoes who would make just any promise in order to seize hold of power and treasury, then bare their fangs after ascending the throne.
“We recall that the APC’s promise to bring home the Chibok girls was one major front in their offensive against the Jonathan administration. The inability of President Jonathan to promptly defeat Boko Haram and bring back the girls alive was showcased as evidence of incompetence and lack of commitment to security by the government. APC promised to win the war and bring home the girls as soon as it was handed power.
But today, like Janus with two faces, they are showing the other face. President-elect has changed the tune from ‘bringing home our girls’ to ‘I cannot promise that we can find them.’ This kind of double speak, coming from a president-elect who in his days as military ruler had been accused of double standards, smacks of incorrigible bend towards broken promises.
“It would thus appear that all along the APC seemed to know how dire the situation and circumstances of the Chibok girls were, but would rather benefit from the electoral capital of alluring promises instead of commending genuine and relentless efforts of the incumbent.
“As for us in the Labour Party, we have not lost hope in the capacity of human beings to change. It is not too late in the day for the APC to rekindle the people’s belief in them and their capacity to largely follow through their campaign promises.
“The lesson to learn is that, it is easy to come to power by propaganda and global conspiracy, but history has never shown an example of rulers who endured in power on the basis of propaganda and manipulations alone. Such manipulations, more often than not, hasten the fall of Janus-faced