Bola Ahmed Tinubu
The Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) has described the reaction of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s attendance of the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina, USA as symptom of an indolent and frightened people.
The party said PDP’s unwarranted criticism over Tinubu’s trip is a testimony of an intimidated organisation suffering from misplaced priorities and whose past time is peddling rumours, half truths and disinformation.
In a statement issued yesterday by its National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the party said if anyone was guilty of mischief, falsehood and deliberate attempt at disinformation on this matter it is the PDP-led Federal Government.
The National Publicity Secretary of PDP, Chief Olisa Metuh, had described as farce ACN’s claim of being specially recognised in the international circle as leaders of opposition for attending the Democratic Party Convention in the US.
Metuh said the claim is deceitful following a revelation that the ACN and its national leader “actually laboured vigorously to purchase his invitation.”
However, ACN said the controversy over Tinubu’s attendance of the convention was needless since the former governor of Lagos State was invited to join the American President and leaders of the Democratic Party at the convention to herald President Barack Obama’s nomination as candidate for the November presidential polls.
ACN insisted that Tinubu was given a gold card and a privilege to attend the ceremony with three other eminent personalities - Governor Kayode Fayemi, Mr Dele Alake and Lagos House of Assembly Speaker, Hon. Adeyemi Ikuforiji.
“Where except in the jaundiced mind of the Peoples Democratic Party can anyone infer from this statement that Bola Tinubu claimed that he was personally invited by President Barrack Obama or that Obama signed gold card for him as being peddled by the PDP and agents of the Federal Government.
“Is it not clear now to all people of goodwill that the PDP and the Federal Government twisted this innocuous statement to serve the agenda of persons who at all cost want to smear Tinubu and the Action Congress of Nigeria? the party asked.
ACN accused the Federal Government and its agents of orchestrating the controversy to score cheap political points, adding that it is nothing but a smear campaign and a panic response by a government in dire search for relevance.
The party said it was not surprised that PDP is feeling intimidated by the towering figure and influence of Tinubu and the unstoppable growing popularity of the ACN.
“Should anyone be surprised why the Peoples Democratic Party would be ever so willing to latch onto anything however tenuous, ridiculous or illogical to discredit him and the party?
“How does Tinubu’s attendance of or manner of invitation to the Democratic National Convention in faraway North Carolina affect the governing of Nigeria which should be the priority of the Federal Government and the PDP?”
ACN demanded to know what bearing Tinubu’s attendance of or manner of invitation to the Democratic National Convention have with the Federal Government’s inability to confront insecurity, unemployment, epileptic power supply, corruption and the myriad of other problems facing the country today.
“How is Tinubu’s attendance of and manner of invitation to the Democratic National Convention become a matter of such urgent national importance as to warrant a morally damaged Presidential aide through his office to be shopping the unsubstantiated and utterly baseless story from one media house to the other at the expense of tax payers’ money?, the party queried.
“Is it anyone’s fault that the PDP lacked the presence of mind and foresight to know that they should have been present at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina? Why must Tinubu and the Action Congress be pilloried simply because of its national leader’s international exposure and strategic thinking reasons for him making the right decision to attend the Democratic National Convention ?
ACN advised the PDP led-Federal Government “to busy itself with improving the economy and the lives of millions of Nigerians rather than lecturing Nigerians on the rules of attending party conventions”.
Meanwhile, the PDP in the South-west has said Tinubu must apologise to Nigerians for bringing the country to disrepute with his lie that he was specially invited to attend the convention.
Reacting to claim by the ACN that PDP was carrying out a smear campaign against Tinubu, Lere Olayinka, the media aide to the National Vice-Chairman (South-West), Chief Segun Oni, said the ACN should rather advise Tinubu to go for deliverance so that he can be purged of spirit of lies that has made him to lie about everything.
Olayinka said; “For those of us that went to proper schools, there was this story called ‘puro kin niyi, ete nii muwa’ (if you tell lie to be acknowledged, you will be disgraced ultimately). That is exactly what is confronting Tinubu now.
“Or was it PDP that made Tinubu, in his characteristic manner to lie that he was invited and given a ‘Gold Card’ to attend the Democratic Party Convention when in actual fact, he bought his invitation with $5,000?
“Was it PDP that made Tinubu to lie that he attended Government College, Ibadan, which he never attended?
“Now that Tinubu is being faced with the consequences of his world of lies, is it PDP that must be blamed?
“To us in the PDP, the most honourable thing for these elements in the ACN to do is to own up to the fake personality that Tinubu, their leader has become and apologise to Nigerians for ridiculing the country with their lies of Tinubu’s invitation by Obama?”