The Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) has criticised President Goodluck Jonathan for embarking on a trip to Brazil for the UN Conference on Sustainable Development at a time Nigeria is facing what amounts to a national emergency, as citizens continue to die from gun and bomb attacks in several cities.
In a statement issued in Lagos yesterday by its National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the party said the decision by the President to travel two days after
dozens of innocent Nigerians, including women and children, were killed or maimed by suicide bombers in Kaduna State, was a sign of insensitive and confused leadership.
It said the fact that the trip was announced by the Presidency as the Yobe State capital, Damaturu, was being terrorised by attackers raised serious concerns about the
Jonathan Administration’s commitment to the security and welfare of the citizenry, which was the raison d’être of any government.
ACN said the President should have cancelled the trip as a symbolic act of a caring leadership and out of respect for the souls that were lost - and are still being lost - within the space of a few days, wondering; whether the President had become helpless and inured to the fate of his compatriots.
‘’Again, we are constrained to ask whether this President is getting quality advice from the myriad of aides surrounding him, or whether, like his benefactor, Olusegun Obasanjo, he has decided he may not even take any advice from his advisers.
‘’In other climes, the usual thing is for leaders to cancel foreign trips or rush home from such trips when their countries suffer tragedies.
‘’In April 2010, Chinese President Hu Jintao cut short his Latin American tour and returned home after a strong earthquake hit the west of China; this year, South Sudanese President
Salva Kiir returned home early from his visit to China, due to the rising tension along the border of his country with Sudan, and even a phone-hacking scandal was enough for British Prime Minister David Cameron to cut short an African trade tour and return home in 2011.