The Presidency has descended heavily on the All Progressives Congress, APC, for accusing President Goodluck Jonahan of ‘desecrating’ his office following his response to former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s letter on Sunday, saying the opposition party does not know the difference between national issues and politics.
Interim National Publicity Secretary of APC, Alhaji Lai Mohammed had in a statement issued on Boxing Day in Lagos said: “The President, who accused Obasanjo of doing him a great injustice, has himself done a great injustice to the Presidency, which is an institution in which he is only a tenant. In the end, the President of Africa’s most populous nation, the leader of the foremost black nation on earth and the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria simply desecrated his own presidency and allowed those who can only be likened to gravy train passengers, rascals and knaves to seize the initiative from him”.
But the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, said it would not engage the opposition party in a war of words in order not to be seen as being insensitive to the holiday mood of Nigerians.
The Special Adviser to the President on Political Matters, Ahmed Gulak, said his principal did no wrong by responding to a letter, which it said was not ordinary, from the former president because it contained germane issues.
He said, “A letter from Obasanjo is not an ordinary letter and the former President is not an ordinary person. You know he has been writing former Presidents before now.
“He raised issues that were germane and Nigerians were expecting the President’s response. The President has therefore responded.
“There is nothing like desecration of the Presidency in this matter. It is the APC and its cohorts who do not see any difference between politics and national issues that are desecrating the Presidency. Nigerians are wiser”, Gulak said.
In its own response to APC’s statement that Jonathan had belittle his office by responding to Obasanjo’s letter, PDP National Publicity Secretary, Chief Olisa Metuh, urged politicians not to politicise every issue just as he said the opposition party should not use the Christmas period to engage in politics.
Metuh said, “On the 23rd of December the PDP National Working Committee declared that this Christmas period is a period to give back to the less privileged, orphans, the widows and to pray for peace and the unity of this country.
“We stand by it and this is not a season for politics. PDP, APC and all the parties in Nigeria will remain after this Christmas season and there is a time for politicking, this is not the time.
“We are ready, we will face them after this period. But for now, it is said ‘give to Caesar what is Caesar’s’. We are giving to Christmas what Christmas deserves in this period. This period does not deserve bickering, name calling, antagonisms and propaganda. This is a season that demands peace and praying for the unity of the country”.