Nigeria deserves a strong, vibrant opposition to play its conventional role in the polity to deepen democracy. Sadly, Nigeria is becoming a one-party state. As a party that believes in democracy and progressive politics, we cannot pretend any longer.
Democracy cannot be said to be fully operational in a situation where the supposed ‘main’ opposition party, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has become a joke, irresponsible and rudderless.
Even as the governing party, we recognize the importance of rigorous and intelligent interrogation of our policies and programmes by the opposition.
There are a lot to gain by our democracy and our country in an atmosphere of robust engagement by responsible and patriotic opposition. The political system we practice has important roles for the political parties outside of power. The system envisaged that such parties would provide alternative viewpoints and put the governing party on its toes.
Instead, the PDP and their minions have in the name of opposition continued to distract the government and Nigerians with their post-election delusions, salacious fictions, conjured rifts in government circle and of course the lowest of it all, the pathetic and senseless Jubril of Sudan malicious tale, among other fake news. Tragic!
It is sad that PDP has finally proved incapable of filling this important democratic space. The other mushroom parties are even worse. Some of the smaller parties are filled with incurable charlatans issuing infantile weekly press statements on behalf of the PDP. Our democracy deserves better.
The so called Coalition of United Political Parties (CUPP), which could have filled the vacuum and engaged the APC administration in useful debates over governance, has become a comedy theater group and frontline PDP minion. CUPP has the unenviable mandate to try to intimidate and blackmail important state institutions such as INEC, the judiciary, and security agencies, on behalf of PDP with the hope of gaining political advantage having been rejected by the majority of the voters.
As the current administration tackles our national challenges and at a period we all should focus on issues of nation building, the best PDP and its acolytes are offering is a distraction.
While the PDP wallows in its obscene conducts, Nigeria under the President Muhammadu Buhari-led APC administration will continue to consolidate on its status as Africa’s largest economy.
Despite inheriting a battered economy, the administration is growing the economy after pulling it out of recession.
The administration’s record investments in agriculture, social investments and infrastructure projects is paying off hugely.
For one, we are now currently the largest rice producing country in Africa as a direct result of conscientious efforts to diversify the economy.
Our age-long corruption and impunity challenges is no longer the norm. The fight against corruption is oncourse. Collectively and individually, a reorientation in our national life and thinking is emerging.
With the continued support of well-meaning Nigerians, we will do more for the shared prosperity, peace and progress of our dear nation.
Mallam Lanre Issa-Onilu
National Publicity Secretary
All Progressives Congress (APC)