Opposition party leader said President Jonathan did not keep the promises he made to them in 2011.
Sponsors of the proposed alliance of 16 opposition political parties in the country said they are ganging up against President Goodluck Jonathan and the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, ahead of the 2015 general elections, because the President and members of his party have not delivered on their election promises.
They also alleged that Mr. Jonathan did not keep the agreement he had with them prior to the polls.
Yusuf Buba Yakubu, the National Chairman of Advanced Congress of Democrats, ACD, one of the parties in the proposed alliance, told PREMIUM TIMES in a telephone interview on Wednesday, that the PDP-led federal administration has failed Nigerians, hence the alliance wants to form the next government, come 2015.
He explained that the 16 parties, which he declined to name immediately, are forming an alliance because the ruling party, which they supported two years ago, has not improved the fortunes of the people, stressing that nothing has changed significantly.
“PDP has failed the nation,” Mr. Yakubu said. “Since 1999 that it has been in power nothing has changed significantly. President Jonathan has not delivered on his promises. He has not done well at all and that is why we want to oppose him.”
Representatives of 16 opposition parties led by a former presidential candidate in the 1999 election, Olu Falae, reportedly met in Abuja recently to discuss plans to form a mega alliance in readiness for the 2015 polls.
Among the parties proposing the alliance, apart from ACD, are Action Alliance, AA, United Democratic Party, UDP, Social Democratic Mega Party, SDMP and the National Conscience Party, NCP.
Mr. Yakubu denied speculations that the PDP is sponsoring the opposition parties, which are yet to adopt a name for the proposed alliance, against the four other opposition parties merging into the All Progressives Congress, APC, saying, “How can the PDP tell us to come together? Some people accused the disciples of Jesus of using demons to cast out demons. Devil cannot fight devil otherwise its kingdom will not stand.”
“We want to form a formidable platform, a formidable force to win elections,” he explained further. “To win elections, parties with the same ideology and the same manifestoes, have to come together and that is what we are doing. Don’t forget banks also consolidate.”
On why the 16 parties did not join the APC, the product of the proposed merger of Congress for Progressive Change, CPC, Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, All Nigeria Peoples Party, ANPP, and a faction of the All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, to float a mega party, Mr. Yakubu alleged that some of the parties in the merger are not progressives as they claim.
“Some of those opposition parties are not really progressives. They are capitalists who want to displace other capitalists,” he said.
He also denied that Mr. Falae who is close to the Ondo State Governor, Olusegun Mimiko, is acting on behalf of Mr. Jonathan to spite a leader of ACN and former Lagos State Governor, Bola Tinubu, a chieftain of APC.
When reminded that the previous alliance between his party and others in 2011 did not work, the ACD National Chairman insisted that it is not a reason to give up.
“So if you are farmer and you go to farm and did not get good produce, will you stop farming? You cannot stop farming. We will continue to struggle until we succeed because we want to give Nigerians an alternative. We want Nigerians to choose a better government,” Mr. Yakubu said.
Mr. Yakubu expressed anger that Mr. Jonathan did not keep the promises he made to the opposition parties, which supported him during the 2011 general elections.
He explained that the parties met several times with Mr. Jonathan before the elections, during which the President promised to appoint some of them into position, but never kept them after winning the presidential election.
Mr. Yakubu, who recalled that he, as the representative of some of the opposition parties, spoke at the rally at Eagles Square, Abuja where Mr. Jonathan declared his presidential interest, denied that the president gave them money to support him to win the election, saying that he (Jonathan) only assured that he would give them appointive positions.
“We’re angry with Jonathan because he did not fulfill the promise he made to us. I was at Eagle Square where I spoke on behalf of the other parties that we are supporting Jonathan. That was where he told Nigerians that he had no shoes. We gave the support because we felt he was the best candidate then. Unfortunately, he has not delivered on his promises to Nigerians.” the ACD boss said.
“He also promised us some positions. He did not give us a kobo. He did not give anybody a kobo. We supported him based on partnership. My party, just like other parties, sponsored its convention; we spent our money. The promise he made to us, he has not kept. We expected him to give us appointments,” he added
When asked why they wanted Mr. Jonathan to give them appointments, Mr. Yakubu fired back angrily, “When you go into partnership, are you not expected to share the profit together?”