APC is an exhibition of expired, analogue politicians - FG
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Public Affairs, Dr. Doyin Okupe, yesterday said that leaders of the newly-formed All Progressives Congress, APC, are politically expired and yesterday's men.
Okupe in a statement in Abuja, said that the alliance, parading former members of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP former members of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP does not have a credible personality that will lead the nation, stressing that it will always outsource its presidential candidate from the ruling party.
Okupe said: 'In view of all these, it is clearly evident that the APC cannot and will not be an alternative to the PDP. 'This fact is further reinforced by the fact that even its leadership parades politically expired, analogue and yesterday's men, including the likes of Bisi Akande, Tom Ikimi, Bello Masari, Muhammad Buhari, Audu Ogbeh, Bashir Tofa and their likes who do not promise any hope for today's Nigeria and, therefore, cannot bring any meaningful change to the polity.'
He said that in spite of the long years of existence of the All Nigeria People's Party, ANPP, the Congress for Progressive Change, CPC, and the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, they had not been able to find credible personalities among their followers for national positions and offices.
'The ACN particularly is reputed to always outsource its presidential candidate to the PDP. It is not surprising, therefore, that in the new party's national executive, six of its 11 members, which is about 60 per cent were former chieftains of the PDP.
'The real question is whether this is APC or PDP 2? This is the poser Nigerians will resolve as time goes on.'
Okupe reiterated that the membership and composition of the APC is nothing progressive.
'They are ideologically ill-defined and seem to have come together for only one purpose, which is to grab power from the PDP and united on one sentiment which is their peculiar hatred for the person of President Goodluck Jonathan.
'Is there an offence in being a President from a minority tribe? Those who cooperate with them from the North are not true mainstream northern politicians but rather anarchists and irredentists who pursue political power based purely on ethnic sentiments.
'From the first day of the Jonathan presidency, these people have tried all methods to suffocate his administration and make it impossible for him to govern.
'Immediately the President was sworn in, he was made to contend with major post-election violence unprecedented in our political history. This paved the way for the escalation of the Boko Haram insurgency also to the level that was totally and absolutely unimaginable; making previous episodes like the Maitatsine riots and similar previous sectarian violence in the North look like a child's play.
'It is to the glory of God, tenacity of purpose and ingenious administrative capacity of Goodluck Jonathan that, in spite of these overwhelming and daunting security crises, the administration still records a most distinguished performance in terms of delivering remarkable dividends of democracy ever recorded in the history of Nigeria.
'Isn't it surprising too that since their coming together, Nigerians are yet to know what the APC stands for in terms of definite programmatic agenda? What do they have that is better than the PDP?
'They have no official manifestoes rather what we hear from one leader is a sharp contradiction from what we hear from another.
'For example, the leading ideologue of the APC in the North, Maj.-Gen. Muhammadu Buhari, delivered a lecture in London where he spoke unambiguously against the muchtalked about restructuring of the Nigerian federation, resource control, sovereign national conference and other core demands of the defunct ACN.
'The other leader, Senator Bola Tinubu, went to a similar event recently and ingeniously listed out their proposed programmes on power, agriculture and rail transportation which are not in any way different from the contents of the Transformation Agenda of the PDP,' he said.
In his reaction, acting National Publicity Secretary of the APC, Lai Mohammed said the Presidency's submission was borne out of fear.
He said: 'They are so worried and jittery by the emergence on the APC. The PDP is still stunned by the emergence of the party. They are afraid. It is just an attempt to cover up their fear. In the first place, who in the APC is as expired as Tony Anenih? Who is as expired as Bamanga Tukur?
'They have nothing more to say and I think they should leave that decision to Nigerians to decide which party parades expired politicians.
'I can tell you that they are afraid already. First they said the APC was a party of Muslims, and then they said they are not moved by the party's registration, now they are singing the expired politicians' tune.
'We would not banter words with them, rather we will continue to moblise membership across the country.'
Meanwhile, the Presidential Villa may soon be playing host to several groups demanding an immediate declaration by President Goodluck Jonathan of intention to contest the 2015 presidency.
This is against public disposition of the Presidency that President Jonathan has not made up his mind on whether to contest or not, since the election is still far.
Though, the Presidency said that Jonathan would make his views known by June 2014, but the pressure coming since the successful registration of the APC had changed the original plans.
Already, such demands were being redirected to the Office of the Special Adviser on Political Affairs, but sources told National Mirror that the villa would soon open its gates to such campaigns in the weeks ahead of the President's expected declaration before the end of the year.
'The presidential aides will continue to host some of the groups, which applications are in excess of 2,000 already, while the Presidency will encourage prominent leaders, including the religious, ethnic and political leaders to join in the demands to persuade him to re-contest,' the source said.
But Okupe insisted that President Jonathan should be allowed to settle down to work to deliver on the democracy dividends.
He said that people campaigning for his reelection bid were political jobbers and should not be taken seriously.