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FG tackles PDP for likening Nigeria to Venezuela

The Minister of Information and National Orientation, Alhaji Mohammed Idris, has condemned the governors of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) who compared the current hardship…

The Minister of Information and National Orientation, Alhaji Mohammed Idris, has condemned the governors of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) who compared the current hardship faced in Nigeria with what is happening in Venezuela.

The minister, in a statement he signed yesterday, said the Nigerian economy was still very strong and expected to record a 3% GDP growth this year.

He said the economy was meeting financial obligations to lenders at home and abroad.

The minister said the federal government was running effectively and “our government can pay all its bills while maintaining a healthy trade balance with trading partners worldwide.”

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He lamented that the PDP governors were supposed to be major players in driving economic growth and prosperity for our citizens in their respective states, rather than mischievously and falsely comparing the current economic challenges to Venezuela.

According to him, though the PDP governors have the right to state their position on national concerns, he urged Nigerians to ask PDP governors how far and how well they have utilised the increased revenue to better the lives of Nigerians in their respective states.

“While opposition politicians are expected to play politics, it should be done within the bounds of truth and fidelity to facts. It is unconscionable for PDP governors to manipulate facts and misinform Nigerians about our country’s true state of affairs.

“Since President Tinubu assumed office, the revenue available to the three tiers of government has more than doubled. All 36 states, including the 774 local governments, have been receiving significantly larger allocations on the back of the reforms being pursued by President Tinubu to reposition our national economy,” he said.

Idris stated that it was on record that most states controlled by PDP owed workers and pensioners months of unpaid salaries and pension arrears, adding that the PDP governors have defaulted in paying gratuities to their retired workers.

He said it was a fact that many of the PDP governors have not paid N30,000 minimum wage to their workers since it took effect more than four years ago, hence all of these anomalies in their states contribute significantly to the economic pressure their citizens face.

“It is disappointing that PDP governors talk about rising costs of living and food when they have not done much to increase food production in their states. The land in Nigeria belongs to the states, not the federal government….”

He urged the PDP governors to join their colleagues in the Nigerian Governors Forum, who are collaborating with President Tinubu and Vice President Kashim Shettima to revamp the economy for Nigerians’ collective well-being.

In the meantime, governors elected on the platform of the PDP and the Board of Trustees (BoT) of the party have said the prevailing hardship in the country has made Nigerians hungry and angry, adding that the people are suffering. 

The two organs of the party spoke at the 76th BoT meeting at the party headquarters in Abuja yesterday. 

To this end, they vowed to reposition the party as a viable opposition committed to providing an alternative to the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC). 

Bauchi State Governor and Chairman of the PDP Governors’ Forum, Bala Muhammed, spoke after the meeting.

Meanwhile, a communique issued at the end of the meeting and read to journalists by the Chairman of the BoT, Adolphus Wabara, expressed concerns over “the biting economic hardship, high cost of essential life-enhancing commodities and alarming food scarcity in the country occasioned by the ill-implemented policies of the APC administration and which are already causing restiveness and agitations in various parts of the country.”

Wabara said the BoT was alarmed by the worsening insecurity in the country as evident in the rising cases of mass killings, banditry, kidnap for ransom and acts of terrorism by assailants who were emboldened by the manifest laidback attitude of the APC administration to issues of security, especially in the last nine months.

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