The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has tackled President Muhammadu Buhari over his recent comments that he would not ‘pick’ any successor before leaving office.
The presidency on Monday had replied a popular cleric, Tunde Bakare, who advised President Buhari to pick his successor for the 2023 presidential election.
President Buhari’s spokesperson, Femi Adesina, however, said the president “though interested in who would succeed him, will not pick a successor.”
However, the PDP, in a statement by its spokesperson, Kola Ologbondiyan, said Mr Buhari had failed.
The opposition party said the continuous reference to a presidential successor, less than a year into his (Buhari) second tenure, is a “direct acceptance of failure and lack of capacity of the Buhari administration to manage the affairs of a nation as complex as Nigeria.”
The party said President Buhari’s apprehensions that his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC), will fizzle out before 2023 is also a weighty forewarning to Nigerians not to put any hope whatsoever in the APC.
“The PDP also charges the Buhari Presidency to immediately apologise to the nation over its comment to ‘hand Nigeria over’. That such is a direct affront to Nigerians and a huge insult on their sensibility and sense of sovereignty to freely choose their leader.
“The party invites Nigerians to note that such continued allusion to a successor by the Buhari Presidency shows that the President and the APC have no agenda for the nation for the next three years.
“It further underscores the hopelessness of the administration and the sorry situation our nation is faced with under President Buhari and the APC,” the party, which lost the presidential tussle in 2019,” he said.
The PDP described as a pathetic drift, President Buhari’s New Year speech as well as his failure to articulate a clear-cut agenda in critical sectors.
“It also exposes the reason behind APC’s resort to blackmail, fabrication and attack on well-meaning Nigerians instead of enunciating a direction for its incompetent administration.
“Our party, standing with millions of Nigerians, counsels the Buhari Presidency to bury its confessed interests in the 2023 Presidency and desist from making unsolicited allusions and references to a successor, as failed leaders can only bequeath failure on a people.
“The PDP therefore charges the Buhari Presidency to immediately withdraw the offensive and provocative remark to ‘hand Nigeria over’, in its response to Rev. Tunde Bakare’s comment on the 2023 Presidency.”
Words of ‘caution’
The PDP cautioned the Buhari Presidency to note that Nigeria is a sovereign nation “governed by rules and that nobody, no matter how highly placed, has the power to hand her over to anybody”.
“In insisting that President Buhari has interest in his successor, the Buhari Presidency is in direct aggression against the will of the people to freely elect a president as guaranteed by the constitution.
“The 1999 constitution (as amended) does not confer the right to install the President of Nigeria on any individual, but on the people of Nigeria through a free, fair and credible election conducted without interference from anybody,” it said.
The party urged the President “to use the remaining years of his tenure to get competent hands to assist him to manage the affairs of the nation, while he concentrates on his retirement plans, as Nigerians expect no solutions from him and his party.”