APC and PDP are two of a kind
The general belief that in politics there is no permanent enemy but permanent interest could be the reason opposition politicians irrespective of their position or records are welcome with open arms in the ruling party when they cross carpet. Of course, this has left the credibility question an open wound in the nation’s politics. The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), for instance, was in power for 16 years and within these years, it had looked impossible to defeat the party during any elections and some audacious party loyalists thumbed their chest and crow the party will rule for 60 years.
However, shortly after PDP’s dismal performance in the 2015 general elections, the party was embroiled in internal wranglings over the leadership squabble between Senator Ahmed Makarfi and Senator Alli-Modu Sheriff, two heavy weights and former governors of Kaduna and Borno states respectively, which further threw the party into muddy waters. There was no question, however, among the duo and their supporters, who had the better argument. Hence, the two warring factions accepted the landmark judgment by the Supreme Court. The ruling therefore, did not only bring relief and excitement to millions of PDP faithful, it was seen by many as King Solomon’s wisdom not to cut the child into two. Others regard it as a relief to the country’s democracy. This is because the nation was drifting towards a one-party state as PDP and other parties lost their members in droves to the ruling All Progressives Congress party.
It is disheartening therefore to learn the other day that, the APC has asked Nigerians not to expect the Buhari-led administration to fulfill its campaign promises within four years. This comment coming from the ruling party is not only a rude shock but a sad reminder of the poor stewardship of the previous administration. Of course, even a lay man knows that it is unacceptable to shift the goal post or give excuses in the middle of the game.
What we see happening now is definitely not new but it is however strange because the change Nigerians voted for is still unavailable. Therefore, the APC should be reminded that the electorate’s exercise of power is just around the corner. While seeking power, the APC promised to fix the country in the shortest possible time if elected. It promised to ban government officials from medical tourism abroad. But, today President Muhammadu Buhari is currently receiving medical attention abroad. And it is possible that some APC governors and leaders of the party who recently visited the president in London had their time in hospital for quick medical attention.
Indeed, history has a way of repeating itself. It is becoming evident that the APC has joined the bandwagon as it now acts a little to the right and a little to the left. The ruling party seems to be re-enacting the template of the PDP with style. This is an important point because those who voted and supported the party did so with the hope of seeing a genuine change. Presently, it is needless to say, the party is becoming less attractive as it is oscillating between keeping its promise and deceiving the people. And in the face of all the irregularities of government and the hardship people are passing through, the ruling party still has the cause to gloat over phantom achievements? The APC blindly over-estimated its ability to produce results if voted into office. Many of the promises remain futile or are a blatant farce while others beg for attention such as the 720,000 jobs annually, generating, transmitting and distributing at least 20,000mw of electricity in four years. Also, the APC flew the kite for a true federalism with the promise to amend the Constitution. Here we are today, towards the end of its first term and true federalism seems unsustainable because some hyenas and jackals believe that Nigeria is not negotiable.
It is possible that the APC built its promises on revenue from crude oil. Hence, when the crude oil price dropped, it humbled the party. The party now appeals to Nigerians to be patient and endure the economic hardship because there is no economic miracle it can lay their hands on other than embrace what previous governments has neglected over the years: agriculture.
Notwithstanding the economic hardship Nigerians are currently facing, it would be unrealistic to suggest that PDP has suddenly become an angel and the beautiful bride overnight. However, it is worrisome that the APC lacks shrewd skills when it chooses to defend its performance deficiency by comparing itself to the PDP thus: “If PDP had fully implemented its manifesto in the 16 years that it was in power, Nigerians would not have been attracted to the APC promise of change in 2015, because there would have been little left to promise.”
No doubt, this thinking has become common among Nigeria’s politicians. By the way, what does the APC mean by if PDP had implemented its manifesto religiously? Politically, the APC meant well for the nation but it now seems it was more focused on short-term and quick-fix solutions. Hence the economy remains bad. Politicians should act in the best interest of the people and put the nation’s interest above their own. Such selfless service will eliminate or at least expose selfish politicians. It is important for politicians to fulfill their promises because they were voted into offices on account of those promises. Anyway, Nigerians will soon speak once again with their votes. And APC should watch it.