Presidency, PDP clash over rising insecurity, governance
The Presidency and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on Thursday clashed over the heightened insecurity in the country, for which President Muhammadu Buhari said he was “taken aback”.
The main opposition party said the President’s comment showed a defeatist posture, stressing that Senate Minority Leader Enyinnaya Abaribe was right to have called for his resignation.
PDP National Chairman Uche Secondus attributed the insecurity to the absence of good governance, which, he said had led to the collapse of the economy.
But, presidential spokesman Femi Adesina described as “mischievous twisting of President’s comments on insecurity’’ by some traditional and social media outfits.
Adesina said in a statement that it was wrong for anyone to postulate that President Buhari was unaware of the security challenges.
The statement reads in part: “It has become compelling to react to a mischievous slant being given by both the traditional and social media to the comments of President Muhammadu Buhari on the security challenges in some parts of the country.
“On Monday, while hosting Eminent and Respected Citizens of Niger State at State House, Abuja, the President said: ‘I was taken aback by what is happening in the Northwest and other parts of the country. During our campaigns, we knew about the Boko Haram. What is coming now is surprising. It is not ethnicity or religion; rather it is one evil plan against the country.
“We have to be harder on them. One of the responsibilities of government is to provide security. If we don’t secure the country, we will not be able to manage the economy properly.”
Adesina observed that the reportage of the statement above was slanted to mean that President Buhari said he was unaware of the security challenges in some parts of the country.
“Far from it, except to the mischievous mind. The President is fully aware and fully in charge of all that is going on.
“The statement by the President was clear enough, and these are the salient points:
“In 2015, we knew there was Boko Haram insurgency, particularly in the North-east, and we mentioned it in our campaigns.
“There are clear economic and cultural factors behind the clashes that sadly rocked many of our communities, be they the Fulani-Tiv or Fulani-Berom conflict, the Tiv versus Jukun and so on. By now, these conflicts are fairly under control.