With the change of baton at the national leadership, former governor of old Bendel state and former deputy governor of Edo state all give their perspectives on how the new president should carry out its responsibilities. VICTOR OSEHOBO who interacted with the two elder statesmen gives an insight on how these two men feel President Buhari should run his administration As the Buhari government settles down to the business of governing Nigeria, two eminent Nigerians General Samuel Ogbemudia, a Chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party and a member of its Board of Trustees, (BoT), and Rev’d Peter Obadan a former deputy governor of Edo and APC chieftain has been speaking on the agenda for the new regime.
Ogbemudia tasked the incoming All Progressives Congress (APC) led administration of Muhammadu Buhari to as a newcomer to Aso Rock ensure that all “new brooms sweep well” towards repositioning the country. According to him, the “APC as you we know it today has never run a federal government so this is their first time. Therefore, like all first timers, like all new brooms they must sweep well otherwise the song, four years hence will be different.”
General Ogbemudia, a two time governor of Midwest region and Bendel state stated this in Benin the Edo state capital, where he said this would only be possible if the federal government avails itself of people reputed for organizing a formidable economic team to design viable economic blue print for the nation’s rapid growth and development.
He urged the Buhari government to consider constituting a commission to look into whether parliament sittings should be part time or full -time with the aim of reducing the high cost of governance and government due to the bogus salaries paid to political office holders. “We have now found that a few people have milked Nigeria dry. So, what do you do? You can’t go back and say the milk sucked few days ago, bring it back to us, but you can prevent future ones from doing the same”.
In addition, he tasked the new government on the need for effective security to protect lives and property of Nigerians wherever they may be.”The most important thing to do with human beings in Nigeria is their security. If a man cannot sleep with his two eyes closed then he is unsafe and cannot work, he cannot do anything. So security comes to the fore.”
Ogbemudia exonerated his party from any blame for the tragic loss at the March 28 Presidential election and said it was the fault of the party’s candidate who relied on an organisation outside the party’s campaign team to handle the vital project of a general elections. He posited that members of the party should embark on a sensible “reorganisation” and “rehabilitation” and find out what went wrong even as he declared that “PDP is made of responsible people in the country but these responsible people who do not welcome any type of challenge, any type of argument and any type of interference”.
On the reorganisation he said “First of all we have to look at the set up of the party; today the PDP is headed by a board of trustees that advices the National Working Committee or executive at every turn when asked to do so. So, if in the process they lost an election, it is quite straight forward for the people responsible to take responsibility for their action and give way to a new executive that will rebuild the party”.
Ogbemudia who also shed light on the likely impossibility of his party taking back power in the next 15 years noted that the PDP went berserk after its first victory due to mismanagement the consequence of which was a devastating defeat.
According to him, “First and foremost you must look at the PDP when it first won the election and when the PDP won the first election, it went berserk, as a result they mismanaged their victory and having mismanaged the victory, the outcome is defeat”. He said, “So, if they want to win in future elections, against a determined party like the APC, then they must work twice as hard as they had done in the past.”
He pointed further that there was no doubt of allegations of “campaigns of hatred, dislike, religious campaign” worked against the party but insisted that “all that put together could not have affected the PDP’s chances if they had put their home right”.
In a similar vein the former deputy governor of Edo state, Revd Obadan also asked Gen. Muhammadu Buhari to as a matter of national interest review the privatisation of several companies within the nation’s power, oil and gas being core sectors to solve the nation’s economic problems.
He asked for the inclusion of tested hands in the federal cabinet alongside revisiting the privatisation processes and to help relaunch the nation back to steam”, and said, “corruption has been the basis” for the country’s many woes and, “we have seen the privatisation of some of these sectors and they are still not working, so it will be good to find out why they are not working.
“When we look at the power sector they have had all sorts of strategic plans; they have injected so much money into it right from 1999 to date and we have not seen changes” Obadan said. Continuing he said, “To me, Buhari administration must go back to the drawing board; reassess what has happened in the past; why we have failed to achieve success and this will determine the calibre of people he is going to bring in…”.
The clergyman turned politician expressed optimism that with Buhari’s coming, many troubled issues would start easing off and the country and her citizenry will begin to feel the impact of change.
“You cannot have economic miracle in one day but Nigerians would immediately start feeling the impact of change because when the head is good the entire body will be good and there is no doubt that the issue of corruption will be tackled”.

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