The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has dismissed the report of the All Progressives Congress (APC) on restructuring, describing it as a ruse and fresh attempt to beguile Nigerians with another round of lies, empty proposals and hollow promises ahead of the 2019 elections.
Saying that it is a recast of APC’s deceptive stunts in the run up to the 2015 general elections, the PDP also said the report is another calculated ploy by the President Muhammadu Buhari-led government to divert public attention from the woes of a worsening economy, unrelenting killings, corruption and the endless litany of afflictions occasioned by ruling party’s dysfunctional governance.
In a statement issued on Wednesday by its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, the party said it amounted to outright depravity that the same APC leaders who at assumption of office, rejected restructuring would now suddenly turn around to pose as fathers of a restructured Nigeria simply because the 2019 general elections beckon.
It noted that the attitude and body language of APC leaders, including President Buhari, indicated that they have no intention of implementing any form of restructuring.
The PDP recalled that President Buhari had in his 2018 New Year address to the nation, rejected the idea of restructuring when he declared that “when all the aggregates of nationwide opinions are considered, my firm view is that our problems are more to do with process than structure.”
The opposition party also recalled that Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, who chaired the APC Restructuring Committee, had vehemently denied reports that the ruling party ever promised restructuring.
It cited a June 29, 2017 interview that El Rufai granted Channel Television where he described Nigerians who were clamouring for restructuring as “political opportunists and irresponsible people.”
“This is in addition to a declaration by the Minister of Information, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, who in a Radio Nigeria (FRCN) interview programme on June 9, 2017, stated that restructuring is not President Buhari’s priority.
“From Borno State Governor, Kashim Shettima, who was quoted to have said “to hell with restructuring,” to the totality of APC leaders, none believed in either true federalism or restructuring by any name called.
“As a matter of fact, it is instructive to note that the APC refused to rally its members in the National Assembly to support or vote for any amendment that dwelt on restructuring when the federal legislature voted on sections of the constitution where amendments had been proposed in the direction of restructuring.
“If anything, APC leaders have consistently criticised any amendment that spoke or had a semblance of restructuring or true federalism.
“It is therefore deceptive that in the wake of their rejection by the people, the discredited APC and its dysfunctional government have suddenly woken up to parade as champions of a restructured Nigeria. This is a callous and wicked attempt to once again take Nigerians on a trip to the land of fantasy,” the statement added.
The PDP urged Nigerians to reject what it described as the new ploy by the APC to deceive them for their votes in 2019.