* Mocks presidency on allegation of smear campaign
Chuks Okocha in Abuja
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) yesterday expressed dismay over what it described as President Muhammadu Buhari’s reported violation of his own executive regulation on COVID-19, which provides for six-month jail term for defaulters.
The main opposition party has also said that the allegations by the Presidency that certain Nigerians were waging a smear campaign against Buhari, has further confirmed that thepresent administration is being haunted by the shadows of its own failures.
The PDP said that it is a huge national embarrassment and gross failure of leadership that Buhari, who ought to lead by example, is being reported of publicly violating the COVID-19 regulation, which he signed just five days ago.
The party in a statement issued yesterday by the National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Kola Ologbondiyan, said that it is indeed scandalous that while Nigerians are striving to obey the COVID-19 regulation, which stipulates the compulsory wearing of nose mask and physical distancing in the public, they are being confronted with reports of open violation of the law by the President at the All Progressives Congress (APC)’s membership revalidation exercise in his hometown, Daura, Katsina State on Saturday.
PDP said that the media was awash with reports and pictures of the President in public, discussing with his party leaders at the event without putting on a nose mask or maintaining social distancing as stipulated by the new law.
According to the PDP, “Such disregard to law and rules, which have characterised the Buhari’s Presidency and the APC, is largely responsible for the failure of leadership under the Buhari-led APC administration in the last five years.”
Moreover, the PDP said this development has further shown that the Presidency and the APC are more interested in partisan politics than the health and wellbeing of the nation.
“We ask, with this violation, does the Buhari’s administration and its officials still have the rectitude to enforce sanctions on any other defaulter in the absence of necessary regrets by President Buhari and his party, the APC?” the statement queried.
The main opposition party insisted that the onus lies on Buhari and the APC to clean up the mess by tendering an unreserved apology to Nigerians and take steps to observe necessary regrets over this violation.
PDP urged Nigerians not to emulate such examples, but continue to exert themselves in observing all COVID-19 protocols placed to check the spread of the pandemic in the country.
In a related development, the main opposition party has also said that the allegations by the Presidency that certain Nigerians were waging a smear campaign against Buhari, has further confirmed that thepresent administration is being haunted by the shadows of its own failures.
PDP also urged Buhari to stop his new-found pleading with Nigerians to award him an unmerited pass mark.
The party stated that such plea in the face of the manifest failures of his administration amounts to an assault on the sensibilities of Nigerians and an attempt to corrupt the records.
In a separate statement issued yesterday, Ologbondiyan said it is clear that the Buhari-led administration is plagued by all-round failure in governance.
“If indeed it has any record of success in any sector, Mr. President would not be begging Nigerians, even in his home state, Katsina and among his party members, to award him a pass mark”
The party said that it is however absurd that Buhari is still pleading for an undeserved pass mark when his administration has plunged the nation into the worst economic crisis, wrecked the productive sectors, and borrowed from all corners of the world.
It also accused the administration of stagnating the country’s infrastructure, elevating corruption, allowing APC leaders to loot from the national coffers, while leaving bandits, terrorists, kidnappers to continue to ravage the nation.
“If the Buhari-led APC administration had done well, will the APC be going about orchestrating a membership revalidation and begging people to award it fictitious pass marks?
“President Buhari’s approval rating has fallen so low that even members of his party, the APC, have abandoned him to seek for direction and leadership elsewhere.
“The situation is so bad that barely two years into his four years and final tenure, leaders of his party are already searching frantically for his replacement with some of them already commencing campaign activities.”
The PDP said that it is rather appalling that instead of facing reality, the Presidency is threatening Nigerians and overheating the polity with allegations of plots to wage a “smear campaign” against Buhari in unnamed online newspapers.
“Such allegation is only symptomatic of a failed administration that is looking for who to blame for its woes. This is more so as any fair appraisal of the APC administration will only present a litany of failures and woes,” the main opposition party said