The Interim National Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has said President Goodluck Jonathan should understand that rather than comparing notes with past administrations, he should be focusing on how well he has delivered on his electioneering campaign promises, while also putting under control the unintended or contrived issues that now threaten his presidency.
Mohammed noted that Jonathan’s claim of better performance over his predecessors has extended his enemies’ camp beyond that of former President Olusegun Obasanjo, who has engaged Jonathan in recent times.
“All other former leaders and their loyalists are now aware that Dr. Jonathan is a ‘superior’ performer! His inclusion of governments outside Nigeria further exposes him to ridicule as development indices indicate that many African countries, many of them less endowed, rank much higher than Nigeria in the development continuum”, the APC spokesman said.
“Whether it is in per capital income, life expectancy, maternal mortality, access to education, potable water, housing, employment, security, agriculture, power, etc, which are all used to measure a country’s Human Development Index, countries like Gabon, Angola, Algeria, Cape Verde, Ethiopia, Malawi, Egypt, Libya, Mauritius, and South Africa are heads and shoulders above Nigeria”.
Mohammed decried the deplorable state of the country as, according to him, “at no time in the history of this country did we have so many Nigerians languishing in foreign jail houses, most of them innocently fleeing from poverty at home.
“To think that this is the same government that spent over two billion Naira on the 2012 Olympic Games that did not yield a medal of any colour.
“Also, despite the hyped agricultural transformation by the Federal Government, Nigeria is still far from being in a position to feed its citizenry. Billions of dollars are spent annually on importation of just one food item, rice. Road infrastructure is still in a parlous state”, he stated.
“Our tertiary educational institutions are a shadow of their old self. Nigerian degrees are now worth slightly more than the papers on which they are printed, leading to parents sending their wards to South Africa, Europe and America (and even Ghana) for quality education. Nigeria’s influence on the global stage has also nose-dived in recent times, climaxing in a noticeable snub at the burial of Nelson Mandela in South Africa.
“Weighed against these setbacks, those fawning aides who are deifying President Jonathan and exaggerating his performance are doing him a disservice. This is because now that they have put him in the stratosphere in terms of his performance, what then is there for him to aspire to in terms of achievement? He can as well relax and wait for Nigerians to show appreciation for his ‘impressive performance’, come 2015”, the opposition party’s spokesman said.