This position was made known by the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) in reaction to a statement credited to the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Public Affairs, Dr. Doyin Okupe that the opposition only criticizes without proffering solutions to the country’s myriad of problems.
Speaking through its National Publicity Secretary, Lai Mohamed, the ACN noted that the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) was not prepared for governance.
It said: “If the PDP-led Federal Government is expecting the opposition to waste its time and energy in helping it to run the government, then it is another clear indication that those at the helms neither prepared for the huge responsibility placed upon them by being voted into office nor learnt fast enough on the job. Little wonder the country’s development has been in reverse gear since 1999.”
The ACN, however, said it is aware of its responsibility as the leading opposition party, and that it has always been guided by the highest ideals of democratic principles and the best practices of democratic opposition in the world.
“In speaking truth to power in Nigeria, on many occasions we have turned ‘non-issues’ which are critical for democracy, liberty and justice into issues; we have, through our media interventions, created the possibilities of greater participation by Nigerians in the governance of the country, while canvassing for greater transparency and accountability in the affairs of government and public institutions. We are glad Nigerians appreciate this and have constantly told us so.
“Because we believe in constructive criticism, we have even gone beyond our brief to offer suggestions. Any close perusal of our regular interventions dating back to the Olusegun Obasanjo presidency will realise that we have proffered solutions to oil militancy in the Niger Delta and Boko Haram violence, suggested ways to wean the country off fuel subsidy through local refinery of crude oil instead of making Nigerians to bear the brunt of a corrupt system; pointed out what areas of the economy needed more government attention to enhance socio-economic development and alerted the government to the dwindling fortunes of the oil sector due to low investment and the emerging dangers of oil discovery in the U.S. and elsewhere.
“But we have since realised that this Federal Government is not in power to improve the lives of the citizens but to enrich the few members of its clique and feather its own nest.
“That is why we are gearing up to take over the mantle of leadership at the centre through the support of Nigerians, who are totally fed up with a party (PDP) that has failed to make their lives better since assuming office in 1999,” ACN further said.