The All Progressives Congress (APC) has warned the Ohaneze Ndigbo and Igbos, in general, to be wary of the proposed promise by Atiku Abubakar to restructure the federation.
APC said it is somewhat strange that the PDP presidential candidate has said little or nothing about restructuring in the course of his campaigns so far.
The ruling party also noted that the dispute over the purported endorsement of Atiku by Ohaneze shows that the Igbos are behind the opposition’s flagbearer.
Ohanaeze Ndigbo at a meeting on Thursday endorsed Atiku Abubakar for the presidency in the coming polls.
The Igbo socio-cultural organization said it endorsed Atiku because the former vice president has “avowed commitment to the restructuring of the federation and reconfirmed same during his recent visit to the United States in his meetings high-level US officials”.
APC has however said that “With a few members of Ohaneze falling for Atiku’s antics, it has now become clear that the purported endorsement of Atiku’s presidential ambition does not enjoy the support of most of the Igbos”.
The party noted that Atiku’s restructuring promise has not been properly spelt out and as such cannot be trusted.
Below is a full statement by the APC as published by Mallam Lanre Issa-Onilu, the party’s national publicity secretary.
“APC to Ndigbo: Beware of PDP, Atiku’s Restructuring Deceit
“We find it curious that the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alh. Atiku Abubakar has tactically avoided speaking on his touted restructuring plans during his campaigns.
“Our observation comes against the backdrop of the now disputed “communique” issued by some members of Ohaneze Ndigbo on the 2019 general elections.
“With a few members of Ohaneze falling for Atiku’s antics, it has now become clear that the purported endorsement of Atiku’s presidential ambition does not enjoy the support of most of the Igbos. One of such proofs is the statement by the Anambra State Government’s dissociating the state from the dubious endorsement of Atiku contained in the equally disputed communique.
“It would now seem that few people in Ohaneze are trying to misrepresent the interest of the Ndigbo and we wonder whether these people are part of Atiku’s friends that he has promised to make rich as a cardinal policy of his government?
“Many questions beg for answers
“Besides the deceitful restructuring promise, what else do the Igbo stand to gain from an Atiku presidency? Nothing!
“Could it be that Atiku and the PDP’s restructuring rhetoric is selective and bespoke for specific audiences? The answer is yes! Atiku’s restructuring rhetoric is simply a convenient, simplistic and populist gimmick aimed at whipping up and exploiting perceived sentiments ahead of the 2019 elections.
“Ndigbo and indeed all Nigerians must be wary of Atiku and his PDP ilk who in their desperate quest for power are ever ready to play fraudulent political games and parade themselves as ethnic champions to the gullible. We must protect the sanctity of our nationhood.
“Atiku has refused to speak on the nature of the restructuring that he is cashing in on. But little wonder because he is transactional in nature. Atiku has no plan for this country and he is not pretending about it. He has said it clearly and on many occasions that he is seeking power to be able to sell off national assets to make his friends and himself rich. There is no doubt that Atiku only intends to use and dump the Igbo people.
“Ndigbo should not forget that it was during the administration of former President Olusegun Obasanjo and Atiku as vice that Nigeria’s political history witnessed the frequent manipulated changes to the Senate Presidency and setting of Igbo brothers against one another for political gains.
“Without playing to the gallery, the President Muhammadu Buhari-led APC administration has pursued a deliberate policy of probity, inclusive governance and national spread in the allocation of our national resources and developmental projects across the country.
“In particular, about 69 verifiable road and bridge projects are ongoing in the southeast. This is unprecedented in the history of our nation. Although the contracts for many of the roads were awarded by past PDP administrations, they were either poorly funded or not funded at all, hence work on the road and bridge projects were previously stalled.
“Currently, the roads and bridges, which are spread across the five states in the South-east, are in different stages of completion, thanks to the funding sourced by the president Buhari-led APC administration from budgetary allocations, the Sukuk Bond and the Presidential Infrastructure Development Fund.
“The APC remains the most sincere political platform working to ensure better inclusion and mainstreaming of all geo-political zones in the governance of the country. We have held constructive, purposeful, country-wide and multi-sectoral conversation on core issues of true federalism and devolution of powers in line with the Party’s Change Agenda.
“Ndigbo and indeed all Nigerians must be wary of the machinations of conmen who now masquerade as ‘messiahs’ in the garb of politicians. Their antecedents does not synchronise with the image they now purport which is dangerous. They are latter-day converts on the issue of restructuring who hitherto occupied public offices and did nothing on the issues of restructuring.
“They have now regrouped to exploit the issue of restructuring in furtherance of their selfish political interests. Their sudden silence on the issue of restructuring is certainly ominous. The Ndigbo should not fall for this fraud.
Mallam Lanre Issa-Onilu
National Publicity Secretary
All Progressives Congress (APC)”.