The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Lagos State has condemned the “Change begins with me” campaign recently launched by President Muhammadu Buhari, saying the initiative had portrayed Nigeria as a “bad” country in the eyes of the rest of the world.
The party argued that the campaign lent credence to the erroneous belief that Nigerians around the world were so badly behaved that they needed to undergo such a reorientation and rehabilitation programme.
The Lagos PDP expressed these views in a statement on Thursday by its Publicity Secretary, Gani Taofik.
According to the Lagos PDP spokesman, he had been receiving negative reviews about the initiative as well as condemnation from outside the country.
Taofik said that the campaign had continued to elicit condemnation from within and outside the country.
“Change begin begins with me that President Buhari launched denotes that things are really bad for Nigerians, and also showed that we Nigerians are bad citizens across the world”, he said.
“On this newly launched programme, I know the number of friends abroad that had called me that the project will affect Nigerians abroad because it means that every Nigerian needs rehabilitation, being a worst character already”, the opposition party spokesman said.
He opined that rather than introduce a new campaign, the Buhari administration should have continued with the policies laid down by former President Goodluck Jonathan, especially the campaign on “Good people, great nation”.
“Instead of this new campaign, which I see as a strategy for 2019, he’s supposed to carry on with the policies of Goodluck, especially on the campaign of ‘good people great nation’”, Mr. Taofik said.
Assessing the performance of the Buhari administration, the Lagos PDP spokesperson admitted that it had scored a pass mark on the war against Boko haram insurgency.
“Though Buhari’s government has destabilized Boko Haram, they have not done anything worthy of praise for this country. Look at how much we left fuel for him, and look at the price for a litter today. None of the promises made to Nigerians has ever been fulfilled. Is this the change Nigerians were expecting? The campaign of change is derogatory. It’s a mobilization towards 2019”.
He claimed that President Buhari’s political ambition would have remained a dream but for PDP’s internal wrangling, which led to its defeat in the 2015 general elections.
“Nigerians’ vote never won Buhari the seat he is occupying today but the internal wrangling that erupted and spoilt show for the party (PDP)”, he said.
Mr. Taofik, however, urged Nigerians to persevere under the Buhari government until 2019 when the PDP would regain power.