The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has urged Nigerians not to lower their guards as easing of restriction on movement by the Federal Government begins today following what it described as the mismanagement of the lockdown by the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration.
The party in a statement issued by its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Olongbondiyan said corruption in the administration hindered the distribution of palliative to poor Nigerians to cushion the effects of the lockdown leaving Nigerians to the fate.
“The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has called on Nigerians not to resign to fate and jeopardize their lives following President Muhammadu Buhari’s failure to find direction in the fight against the spread of COVID-19 in our country despite the huge resources at his disposal.
“The party charges Nigerians as well as states not to drop their guards but must intensify their personal and community protection strategies, seeing that the Buhari-led Federal Government has reached its wits end and has no plans to rescue Nigerians from the throes of this pandemic.
“The PDP lamented that the Buhari Presidency and its incompetent Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 had compounded the situation by crippling the economy after which they are now leaving Nigerians to their fate without providing any therapeutic or operable containment strategy to stem the rising spread and fatalities of COVID-19 in our country.
“The PDP says it is disheartening that officials of the All Progressives Congress (APC)-led Government are more interested in TV shows, self-praise, photo-ops, corrupt diversion of palliatives as well as needless political parochialism at the expense of the lives of Nigerians.
“Our party notes that the inept leadership of Buhari Presidency failed to engage our indigenous medical experts and manufacturers for home grown solutions in therapeutics, test kits and ventilators; leading to an avoidable spike of the pandemic in our country.
“Nigerians would recall that our party had continued to warn against the over-reliance on foreign solutions at this time when every nation is more interested in its own challenges, a situation that even put our nation at risk of serving as guinea pigs for medical experimentations.
“Moreover, President Buhari’s lockdown order failed because Mr. President failed to address the corruption in his administration that scuttled the distribution of necessary palliatives to most of the poor and vulnerable Nigerians, whose survival depended on daily income from the streets.
“Rather than overhauling the corrupt network in charge of distributing the palliatives, President Buhari accepted the imaginary figures of beneficiaries being reeled out by officials while leaving Nigerians to their horrendous fate.
“It is even unimaginable that the Buhari Presidency is releasing Nigerians into the streets without any comprehensive fumigation of major streets, shopping malls, offices and other public places in cities like Abuja and Lagos despite the huge resources it claimed to be spending on this pandemic.
“Furthermore, President Buhari has failed to make provisions for post lockdown stimulus for compatriots whose businesses have been crippled and are now in dire need of refinancing.
“The Federal Government’s approach to this pandemic is akin to a father, whose compound have been invaded by hordes of monsters, ordered his children to stay indoors without food and other supplies, only to engage in grandstanding after which he opened the doors for his children to confront the increased army of monsters on empty stomachs, without protection or weaponry.
“The PDP challenges the Buhari Presidency to declare what investment it had made in production of therapeutic and equipment, despite its spending claims vis-a-vis the availability of experts in many tertiary institutions of our country.
“While the incompetent Buhari administration is banking on foreign solutions, countries like Senegal are mobilizing their indigenous experts for production of ventilators and test kits as well as massive investment in management drugs and other home grown medicines.
“The PDP, therefore, on behalf of Nigerians, demands a public apology from President Buhari for failing to provide the required leadership at a critical time like this.
“Mr. President should apologize to Nigerians for his failures, which have worsened the pandemic situation. He should also account for the billions of naira, which his government claimed to have spent, particularly, on palliatives.
“Furthermore, the PDP urges the private sector not to be discouraged by the failures of the Buhari administration but rally for solutions, particularly towards homegrown solutions for therapeutics, test kits, ventilators and palliatives.
“Our party also appeals to Nigerians not to get carried away by the easing of the lockdown but to continue to obey the hygiene protocols and other regulations provided by international and local authorities.
“This Buhari government has failed us but we cannot afford to fail ourselves. Let us, in unity, defeat COVID-19 by intensifying our personal protection against the pandemic” the statement said.