All Progressives Congress, APC, during campaign for the 2015 presidential election, played dirty opposition politics with the Boko Haram menace, especially the issue of the Chibok girls. Now, more than a year after winning the election, the party is still finding it difficult to transform into a ruling party, blaming the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, at any given opportunity.
Unlike the APC, the PDP as headed by the Senator Ahmed Markafi-led caretaker committee, in light of Nigeria’s recession, is proving to be a better opposition than the APC were. The PDP recently urged all Nigerians, “Whether you are the party in government or not”, not to play politics with the recession.
Playing politics with everything was a pastime the APC happily engaged in as an opposition. They went to disgusting length just to win the election – and are doing same to justify their victory. The party had used the rising dollar at the time to campaign against the PDP. One of their banner read: “Is N216 to $1 okay? It’s time to speak out,” and urged the electorates to “Vote APC”.
The table has turned. Nigeria’s economy is deteriorating under the APC’s watch – with one dollar trading at over 400 naira. Some Nigerians have taken to suicide as a way out of the hunger and suffering brought about by the APC’s badly formulated policies or the lack of any. In all of these, the ruling party continues to play the opposition, blaming the PDP and refusing to accept it’s failings.
This tactics to absolve itself of blame is why the APC, elected to change Nigeria, is now telling the masses that the change they voted for begins with them. When the party’s national leadership, in a reply to criticism from the PDP had asked Nigerians to support the APC government, no one knew that this request was for the masses to take full responsibility.
But that aside, the APC does not need supporting; not because there are no Nigerians willing to assist the party, but because they are the type to want to take the glory. This is why they blame the PDP, hoping that when things turn positive they’d take the credit and use same to score political points ahead of the 2019 elections.
Also, this explains why the party refused to form an inclusive government, because for the APC, it’s all about winning elections. From all indications and the urgency in which the party flip-flops on policies, it is obvious the APC’s objective was to dislodge the PDP from power; governing Nigeria was an afterthought.
Judging from his discriminatory “97% to 5%” classification of voters in 2015, which he followed with skewed appointments into key offices, even if Nigerians were willing to lend their support, the President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration does not encourage the participation of every Nigerian with the expertise to help the administration out of the mess they’ve walked into.
Preoccupied with blaming the PDP, the APC has trapped itself in a corner where even if it wanted, it has become difficult for them to own up to their mistakes. Not content at serving a single term, their eyes is already set at 2019, and for a party whose only objective is to win elections, to own up is to indict themselves as clueless and unfit to govern.
If they would not own up, the APC can at least stop blaming the PDP and focus on navigating Nigeria out of recession. Buhari must be reminded that he was not voted into office to tell stories of how the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan “wrecked” the country, and that his refusal to provide good governance is killing Nigerians.
The advice by the Emir of Kano, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, to the APC to stop blaming the PDP and accept that “We have also made some mistakes in the current administration,” leads one to ask: Will the APC ever acknowledge it’s mistakes and stop blaming the PDP? My submission: Only if 2019 was a dream and the APC were interested in governance more than in winning elections.

Maduekwe is editor at Discussing Africa.

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