A coalition of non-governmental organisation, under the aegis of Forum of Non-governmental Organisations in Nigeria (FONGON) has described the letter written by former President Olusugun Obasanjo and statement of former Head of State, Ibrahim Babangida to President Muhammadu Buhari, as distraction to the current government.
The NGO, which is a formation of about 200 non-governmental organisations (NGOs) with a total membership of three million members spread across the country, said the letters are from people who want to divert the attention of President Muhammadu Buhari from fighting corruption.
Speaking at the rally in Abuja, yesterday, the national coordinator of the group, Comrade Wole Badmus said, “Mr President, we have chosen to come out this time because there seems to be an orchestrated and well-choreographed campaign going on across the country at the moment to demonize your administration and hoodwink unsuspecting Nigerians into believing that the administration has achieved nothing since assuming office.
“The reason for this campaign, which is becoming increasingly violent, is simple; the Iooters, economic saboteurs and unpatriotic fellows are feeling the heat of your administration’s fight against corruption. They are earnestly yearning for a return to the immediate unedifying past in which the national treasury became the piggy bank of a few. They also want to pave the way for the return of the same people who brought the country to where it was before you assumed office.
“Your Excellency, the recent spate of letter and memo writing is not an accident. We believe it is aimed at discouraging you from running for a constitutionally guaranteed second term, which they are afraid will put Nigeria on an irreversible path of probity, prudence and progress.
“We believe there will be more letters and more voices urging you not to run. And we urge you, Mr. President, not to heed such calls. Those who are for you are more than those who are against you.
That is why we have decided to come out. We are concerned that unless an urgent action is taken, the voices of these people, whom we believe are being sponsored by looters and their ilk, may become the dominant voices.”
On the achievements of the current administration, the group said, “As revealed by the minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, here are some of the positive results, which we have cross-checked and found to be true:
“Agriculture export is up year-on-year by 25 per cent, rice import from Thailand alone has dropped. From six million rice farmers, the administration has increased the number of rice farmers to 12.3 million, thanks to its Anchor Borrowers’ programme.”
“5.2 million primary school children in 28,249 schools in 19 states are being fed daily; 200,000 unemployed graduates have enlisted into the N-Power Job Scheme, and a quarter of a million loans already distributed to artisans, traders, and farmers.
“Infrastructural development is going on at a massive rate. From roads to rail and power, the government is spending heavily to build modern infrastructure.
“Corruption has been driven under the table, and the corrupt one can no longer flaunt their ill-gotten wealth.
“Boko Haram has been massively degraded and no longer poses a threat beyond cowardly suicide bombings.”
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