A group, the Niger Delta Development Initiative(NDDI), has disclosed that the zone would support only presidential candidates with genuine interest in restructuring and true federalism.Its President, Ernest Ukpe and Secretary, Tom Buma disclosed this in a statement in Uyo yesterday.
According to the group, the expectations of the Niger Delta people, and indeed Nigerians, have been short lived, following the inability of the All Progressives Congress (APC)-led government to fulfill its 2015 promises.
“We are surprised that President Muhammadu Buhari is campaigning with alleged corrupt politicians as Senator Godswill Akpabio. Musliu Obianikoro, Orji Uzor Kalu and all the previously “corrupt” PDP big wigs, who have now been sanctified after defecting to the APC,” the statement said.The group recalled that Akpabio was charged with alleged money laundering bordering on over N180 billion.
It further stated that the present administration has in three years, borrowed more than what ex-presidents Olusegun Obasanjo, Musa Yar’Adua and Goodluck Jonathan’s administrations.
While noting that electricity generation and distribution has worsened, the group added that Nigeria has become the poverty capital of the world overtaking India.
The group lamented that the East/West Road has been abandoned, while only N3 billion, out of the more than N130 billion needed for Calabar/Itu highway has been released to mobilise the contractor.
Meanwhile, the National Vice Chairman, South South, Mr. Emmanuel Ogidi, has restated that its standard-bearer, Atiku Abubakar is not corrupt.He said, on the contrary, Atiku is a man who loves the masses and is ready to transform the nation.
In an exclusive interview with The Guardian in Warri, Delta State, he said it is only a court of competent jurisdiction that can find Atiku guilty. He asked: “Has he been found guilty in Nigeria or anywhere else? The answer is no. However, Nigerians are already changing their perception about him.Ogidi said the PDP would focus on revamping the economy, restructuring Nigeria, and providing fresh initiatives to tackle unemployment, if elected.
Other areas of focus, he said include addressing security challenges like Boko Haram and religious violence in the country, and providing qualitative education. He expressed concerns about the continued strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).The national vice chairman also expressed displeasure over the number of Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camps in the country. He said the PDP ‘slogan is making Nigeria work again’ and urged Nigerians to shun political apathy by coming out en masse to vote for Atiku on February 14, 2019.