All Progressives Congress , APC, Central Senatorial candidate in Ekiti State, Hon Opeyemi Bamidele, has pointed out that the inability of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Vice Presidential candidate, Mr. Peter Obi, to espouse the policy thrust of the PDP-led government packaged differently to offer credible solutions to crises bedeviling the nation at the debate programme shows that the opposition is not prepared for presidency in 2019.
Bamidele, who expressed disappointment that the PDP had come with the mantra to banish poverty allegedly brought by the President Muhammadu Buhari-led government could not use the debate to convince Nigerians that it has special solutions to the problems confronting the nation.
He said the submission and projection on how to strengthen the country by the former Anambra State governor, Obi, in pivotal areas of Education, Security, Economy, agriculture and infrastructure sectors didn’t show that Nigerians would get a better deal than they are getting if his principal, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar wins the poll.
The debate, held at Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja and moderated by a renowned broadcaster, Imoni Amarere on Friday was organized for selected Vice Presidential candidates of political parties by Channels Television.
The former House of Representatives member lauded Vice President Yemi Osinbajo for being forthright by telling Nigerians areas where the present administration has not been able to make tremendous impact on Nigerians, describing this as a rare trait by any African leader.
In a statement in Ado Ekiti yesterday, Bamidele urged Nigerians to avoid the mistake of electing leaders that would come to experiment with the collective destiny of the citizens, saying allowing Buhari/Osinbajo to consolidate on the democratic dividends being dished out would be a better option.
He said PDP as a political party with quests to wrest power from an incumbent would have been practical to tell Nigerians what it has to do differently to resolve whatever mistake the Buhari’s government has been making.
Bamidele said all the policy thrust reeled out by the PDP Vice Presidential candidate that would be the hallmark of Atiku/Obi presidency were almost similar to what Nigerians are enjoying under the present government.
“The VP debate was an eye opener to Nigerians that Atiku/Obi joint ticket would be a trial and error government, which Nigerians can’t afford to entertain this time.
“Mr. Obi’s submission that the PDP government will provide jobs for the youths population through commercial agriculture was not different from what Buhari has been doing. Within the last three and half years, Buhari’s presidency has raised over 10,000 youth commercial farmers across the nation.
“In the area of security, Mr Obi promised that they would reinvigorate the Nigeria army to be able to combat the problem of insurgency in the Northeast when it was obvious that Buhari/Osinbajo–led government has invested in the security sector more than any government ever.
“For the 2018 alone, a sum of one billion dollars was earmarked to buy equipment for the Army and this accounted for the tremendous successes being made in the fight against Boko Haram.
“The PDP also promised to give social security to poor Nigerians, when it was clear that over five million Nigerians are presently enjoying social security under the APC-led government in the fashion of N-power, Youth in commercial agriculture, Tradermoni scheme, these were aside from the free meal programme initiative of Buhari that had shored up enrolment in schools.
“In the transport system, Mr. Obi said all the major commercial hubs of Nigeria like Lagos, Onitsha, Aba, Kano, Kaduna and Maiduguri will be connected, when the present government had commissioned Kaduna-Abuja rail line and had done creditably well in connecting Lagos-Abuja-Kano while the Calabar-Abuja super highway is being given attention to connect every part of the country together for robust economic prosperity.
“With what Mr. Obi said and disclosed as the cardinal focus of the PDP for presidency, Nigerians should expect nothing special if Atiku wins presidency. They seem not prepared for the onerous task and allowing any ill-prepared leaders to take over power at a time when the country is making steady progress by boosting local economy will return Nigeria to those dark years.
“Under Buhari presidency, the farmers are now getting tremendous benefits. The Nigerian rice like Abakaliki, Lake(Lagos-Kebbi), Calabar Swamp rice and Calabar Cocoa plantation, Benue/Abuja/Kogi Yams were being exported to other Nations apart from enjoying local boom due to financial supports being given by APC-led government.
“Today, rice importation to Nigeria has dropped. And no nation would initiate policies that would reduce dependence on foreign products that would feel some pains at the initial stage and Nigeria is not immuned to this.
“Any policy reversal at this time, which the PDP was coming to implement will make all the sacrifices and pains already suffered by Nigerians for these progresses to be achieved to be in vain”, Bamidele warned.