The Action Congress of Nigeria has described President Goodluck Jonathan’s first year in office as a poor and faltering start to his four-year tenure. The party said it was characterised by a monument of insecurity and scandals of “historic proportions.”
In a statement on Tuesday by its National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the party said President Jonathan frittered away the goodwill of a nation due to “gross incompetence and waffling leadership.”
The statement read in part, “Nigerians are worse off today than they were when President Jonathan assumed office on May 29 2011, and the country under his watch has become more divided today than at any other time since the civil war of 1967 to 1970.”
Though the ACN said one year is too short to judge an administration, it never imagined that any administration would make things worse than they met them.
According to the party, Nigerians are fast losing hope when it comes to the government’s ability to ensure the security of lives and property.
“As at the last count, over 1,200 Nigerians have been sent to their early graves by the rampaging Boko Haram, as the Jonathan Administration waffles or perhaps deliberately delays efforts to end the crisis. As the government flip-flops between non-engagement with ‘terrorists’ to qualified engagement, the sect grew stronger and more daring.
“Add this to the continuing cases of kidnapping for ransom and other violent crimes across the country, and one begins to wonder whether Nigeria is on the road to Somalia, or if indeed there is a government worth its name in Abuja,” the ACN said.
The party said the administration’s first year was also a “tsunami of scandals and monumental corruption that have put a lie to President Jonathan’s pledge, at his inauguration, to fight corruption with overwhelming force of our collective determination.”
It said the removal of subsidy on fuel revealed the unimaginable pilfering of the resources of the commonwealth in the name of fuel subsidy.
“Under President Jonathan’s watch, the multi-billion-naira police pension scheme was looted by incredibly-brazen public officials, emboldened by the impunity that now characterises government affairs,” the statement said.
ACN said the President himself is fast losing the moral authority to fight corruption, after being embroiled in scandals in just one one year of his tenure.
The party added, “These scandals are chipping away at the credibility of the President and weakening his Administration’s ability to fight corruption, which is a major inhibition to the country’s development.
“Overall, President Jonathan’s first year in office is a poor and faltering start to his four-year tenure. He has no one but himself to blame for frittering away the massive goodwill that propelled him to office, in spite of his modest means.”
Also, the Osun State chapter of the ACN said all the Presidents, who ruled Nigeria since 1999 till date, failed Nigerians.
A statement by the Director of Publicity, Research and Strategy, Osun ACN, Mr. Kunle Oyatomi, said, “There is a systemic collapse, sectors like the economy, education, and infrastructure have collapsed and the best brains the government at the centre can offer cannot proffer any solution.”
“May 29 is a day that Nigerians should be sad about. Not much good has come from the thought of that day in our history, and until we dismantle everything evil which that day represents, we may fail completely as a state, a people and a geographical expression.”
Meanwhile, the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, has berated those criticising the government of Jonathan, saying the President has done well.
He said though the country was yet to get to the Promised Land, the President and the Peoples Democratic Party needed the contribution of Nigerians to move the country forward.
Tukur, who spoke to reporters in Abuja on Tuesday, said, “We have had 13 years of an uninterrupted journey to the Promised Land and to get there, PDP needs the cooperation of all Nigerians, especially the opposition parties and the civil society groups to build this great country of ours.
“This transition time for the nation is not the time to walk on political divide and demonise the ruling party, the PDP. The issues involved go beyond politics.”