The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has said the recent admission by the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, that stealing was going on ‘quietly’ in the President Muhammadu Buhari-led APC administration vindicated its position that the administration was corrupt.
The PDP stated this in a statement by its spokesperson, Kola Ologbondiyan, on Monday in Abuja while reacting to the minister’s interview published by Daily Trust on Sunday.
In the interview, Mr Amaechi said the ‘non-display’ of stolen public funds by political office holders was part of Mr Buhari’s legacies when compared to the 16-year rule of the PDP government.
The PDP was in office between 1999 and 2007 but lost power to the current APC government in 2015.
“The first legacy, as a former chairman of the Governors Forum, I want Nigerians to be honest; can you openly take money in this government? I am not saying whether we are corrupt or not. Let us assume we are corrupt, can you openly take money from this government? In the past governments, what happened? You can take money in the streets,” the minister said in the interview.
“Corruption was so pervasive that nobody was talking about it. It was not hidden that people completely and openly displayed their wealth. Most of those who did that had nothing to do to show for it. They did not have a carpentry shop, but they were billionaires.
“They did not hide it; but here, if you are stealing, it is done quietly. I am not saying it is good, it is a sin punishable. In the previous government, you could steal and you won’t be caught. If you were caught, there won’t be consequences. But in this government, if you steal there are consequences.”
Mr Amaechi also admitted the reality of economic downturn and rampant insecurity in the country but argued that the problems predated the Buhari administration.
The PDP said the minister’s comment was a confirmation of the “shades of corruption peculiar to the current administration”.
It accused the APC-led government of using the party as a refuge for officials fingered in corruption cases from prosecution.
“The situation as presented by Amaechi shows that ‘quiet stealing’ is a policy of the APC administration. This explains why the administration is heavy on propaganda and has failed to prosecute its officials and APC leaders openly indicted for corruption, but only resort to ‘easing out’ such thieves with a pat on the wrist,” the opposition party said.
The PDP challenged Mr Buhari to investigate and prosecute APC leaders “fingered for the over N25 trillion missing across different agencies as well as missing billions of naira meant to fight insecurity in the country.”
The nation’s main opposition party, without denying the corruption in its 16 years rule, said the ruling party had unjustifiably denigrated the country when it took over in 2015.
It said, “The APC has looted our nation into two excruciating economic recessions in a space of six years, and turned our nation into the poverty capital of the world, where over 83 million citizens live in abject impoverishment and unable to afford basic necessities of life,” the PDP said.
It called on Nigerians to vote out the ruling party in 2023.
Efforts to reach APC officials to comment on the allegations by the PDP were unsuccessful.
Read full statement:
Amaechi’s APC Looting Confession Vindicates PDP
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) says the confession by the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, that stealing is going on quietly under the President Muhammadu Buhari-led All Progressives Congress (APC), vindicates its stand that the APC is a haven of thieves and treasury looters.
The party asserts that the confession also further confirms that the Buhari-led APC administration has been providing official cover for corrupt officials, who have turned government agencies to cash cows and Automated Teller Machines (ATM) for themselves, their cronies, family members and mistresses.
The situation as presented by Amaechi shows that ‘quiet stealing’ is a policy of the APC administration. This explains why the administration is heavy on propaganda and has failed to prosecute its officials and APC leaders openly indicted for corruption, but only resort to “easing out” such thieves with a pat on the wrist.
The confession by Amaechi exposes why the APC administration has failed to recover the over N25 trillion naira reportedly stolen by APC leaders in various government agencies.
Nigerians now have a clearer picture on how the N9.3 trillion as detailed in the reported NNPC memo was stolen, how over N2 trillion was allegedly siphoned under fraudulent subsidy regime as well as how the N1.1 worth of crude oil was reportedly stolen using 18 unregistered vessels.
This is in addition to the revelation by the National Security Adviser (NSA), Gen. Babagana Monguno, that billions of naira meant for security under the APC could not be traced.
Nigerians now know how billions of naira reportedly stolen from various agencies including the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), in which a very top APC government official was indicted, as well as the N500 billion Social Investment Programme fund, as revealed by First Lady, Aisha Buhari, were siphoned.
Amaechi’s confession has also shed more light on the circumstance behind the alleged stealing of N165 billion in the Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA) under his ministerial purview, the N1.5 trillion and $9.5 million reportedly stolen from Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), the $65 million (N31 billion) frittered from the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) as well as the N90 billion looted from the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), among others.
This is in addition to the alleged secret looting of huge part of foreign loans and repatriated funds placed at the disposal of the APC and its administration.
The APC has looted our nation into two excruciating economic recessions in a space of six years, and turned our nation into the poverty capital of the world, where over 83 million citizens live in abject impoverishment and unable to afford basic necessities of life.
The PDP charges Nigerians to hold the APC and its leaders responsible for all the woes that have befallen the nation in the last six years and ensure that the fizzling APC is not allowed anywhere near the governance of our nation, come 2023.
National Publicity Secretary
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