Buhari needs sup­port not threat — VON DG

Daily Trust - - IN­SIDE POL­I­TICS - By Muideen Olaniyi

The Di­rec­tor-Gen­eral of Voice of Nige­ria (VON), Osita Okechukwu, has ad­vised Chief Ed­win Clark to sup­port the Pres­i­dent Muham­madu Buhar­iled Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment rather than en­gag­ing in pro­pa­ganda over the Niger Delta de­vel­op­ment is­sue.

Okechukwu gave the ad­vice in Abuja yes­ter­day, fol­low­ing the ul­ti­ma­tum given to the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment by Chief Clark via Pan Niger Delta Fo­rum (PAN­DEF) on the need to con­sti­tute ne­go­ti­a­tion team in the Niger Delta re­gion be­fore Au­gust 1.

He said the Buhari-led gov­ern­ment was, how­ever, work­ing to en­sure the de­liv­ery of true democ­racy div­i­dends to Nige­ri­ans, adding that the peo­ple had the right to vote out the APC gov­ern­ment in 2019 if they were not sat­is­fied with its per­for­mance.

He said, “We were given a fouryear ten­ure to start with, and if it suits the Nige­rian peo­ple they will re-elect the APC and Pres­i­dent Muham­madu Buhari again or any other can­di­date in the APC.

“I was not very im­pressed with Chief Clark, a man I have re­spect for, be­cause he is sound­ing as if ev­ery­body is op­posed to de­vo­lu­tion of power.”

Okechukwu, who said Clark dur­ing the PDP ad­min­is­tra­tion had the op­por­tu­nity to bet­ter the lot of the peo­ple of Niger Delta but didn’t, added that the Pres­i­dent Buhari-led ad­min­is­tra­tion in­her­ited an al­most failed state but was de­ter­mined to re­struc­ture the coun­try’s sub­struc­ture.

The VON di­rec­tor-gen­eral said most state gov­ern­ments were ow­ing salaries and pen­sion ar­rears for 18 months when the ad­min­is­tra­tion came in.

He said the Buhari ad­min­is­tra­tion within two years of its ten­ure, spent about a tril­lion naira in bailout funds to ad­dress is­sues of salary ar­rears in states.

He added that the ad­min­is­tra­tion through a 500 mil­lion dol­lars for­eign loan, was able to re­ha­bil­i­tate roads in the Niger Delta which Clark never re­mem­bered to fix.

On the ag­i­ta­tion for the re­struc­tur­ing of Nige­ria, Okechukwu said, “We are all com­mit­ted to re­struc­tur­ing the coun­try, but we are say­ing we are start­ing with the re­struc­tur­ing of the sub­struc­tures.

“The APC has also set up dif­fer­ent com­mit­tees to look at this re­struc­tur­ing is­sue,” he said.

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