Recent events in the polity, especially the incurable budget padding stain and controversy currently rocking the House of Representatives and many more unanswered challenges which bother on the economy, politics, insecurity, plaguing the country, have again given out the party in government, the All Progressives Congress, APC, as weak and unserious.
If anything at all, the political organisation and its conduct of the affairs of the country have dragged it down the path of infamy so much so that it is becoming difficult to entrust it with the people’s destiny, as Nigerians previously rated her.
On the foregoing note, we observe that 15 months into the party’s government, too many unanswered questions have been thrown up as to what the future holds for the people and their country.
Thus, questions like whether the party is actually prepared for governance dominate public discourse these days. Other common themes of discussions in formal and informal public circles today include the following: Does APC have solutions to the current economic challenges faced by everyone, except those in Aso Rock? Does the leadership of the party know that Nigerians can hardly afford a single meal today?
To say that things are really bad and near worse is to say the least that Nigerians will soon be feeding from the waste bin; this is not an understatement but a declaration of facts given indicators readily available.
According to observers, APC which controls the executive, and the National Assembly, another critical arm of government, lacks the knack and wherewithal to organise itself into a formidable whole and an indivisible entity that can bring about needed change. What with the sad combination of mutual suspicion, mistrust, disloyalty, divided National Assembly, disloyal party faithful and supporters across the country.
Against the backdrop of the constitutional provision that the welfare and security of the people are fundamental duty and responsibility of government, will things change and relief guaranteed to the people now or in the foreseeable future? This is the question the APC government must answer.
In fact, every day, the country appears grinding to a halt. There appears to be so much apprehension in the land. Indeed this is frustrating. While critical government institutions and arms that ought to compliment the executive with well-coordinated supervision failing in their responsibilities, the APC is turning a blind eye. The party is being seen as unorganised and confused, lacking the capacity to call its members to order and decorum.
This has become glaringly noticeable following recent developments in the Senate and House of Representatives. For instance, in the upper house, President of the Senate Bukola Saraki believed to be a heavy financier of the party is at loggerheads with gladiators in Asokoro presidential villa over allegation of incomplete assets declaration and lately, forging the Senate rules.
Another case is the one between the party leader’s wife who allegedly held the jugulars of a colleague and senator from Kogi State over uncomplimentary remarks or invective on the leader’s madam.
Sadly, it is the same infighting and misdemeanor of some members in the House of Representatives that have been fed to the Nigerian public who are desirous of food on their tables through good laws, but who, instead, are daily inundated with brazen irresponsibility and unresponsiveness exhibited by APC members from the parliament and the executive. Unfortunately, the party is helpless or takes sides instead of being an unbiased umpire.
Moreover, the APC appears to be on the news often for the wrong reasons. For the umpteenth time, recently, it unleashed loose cannon on the already impoverished and vexed Nigerians. Whereas it is usual for the sacked chairman of House Appropriation Committee, Abdulmumin Jibrin, to allege budget padding against his benefactor and speaker, Yakubu Dogara, through social media to drive his selfish ends, he has since shifted the battle to the courts. This we see as another distraction in the polity even with the ruling party’s many unsettled battles.
This is a show of shame on the APC’s “change” maxim and it begins to prove book makers right that never a time was the party actually prepared for governance, but just got victory by sheer luck.
We expect, like many dispassionate observers do, that the party ought to be the rallying point for its warring members in the executive and parliament.
On the economic front, we must ask a few questions: Why is there no concrete forex policy to shore up the naira? Why is there no stop to herders/farmers incessant clashes? Why is the economy in full recession? Why has the party not made inputs through seminars, strategic alliances with experts, etc, to lend a helping hand to government?
Honestly, these are the challenges that should bother the national chairman of the party, Chief Odigie Oyegun at age 77, and not his boastful birthday posturing, reveling on the defeat of an incumbent government.
For worried Nigerians, it is time the APC stopped taking them for granted. The time is now to call its members in the executive, especially those in the presidency, security agencies and the National Assembly to order and put Nigeria first. The grandstanding, witch-hunt and distractions must stop. APC must face governance in full swing if it must bring desired succour to the people. The APC must rise for change unless it is in power to shortchange Nigerians and not to change the country for the better.