The National Chairman of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) Chief John Oyegun has appealed to Nigerians to ‘bear’ with the governing party being led by President Muhammadu Buhari, saying that all the current hardship confronting the people will soon become a thing of the past.
Chief Oyegun, who was speaking at the weekend during a special event organised to honour him by the Inner Circle of Friends, University of Ibadan, acknowledged that truly, most Nigerians were facing hardship, assuring that the turning point was around the corner.
“Yes, it has caused pain, stress and there is a bit of hunger in the land. People are hungry and there is no question about that. But if you need to eat an omelette, it is inevitable that you have to break the egg.
“So, my message is to our people nationwide to bear with us. The pride that you feel when you walk out and say you are a Nigerian, backed up by 170 million people and hopefully backed up by an economy that will bring us back to growth, to stability and development. The pride that everyone will feel is much greater than the attempt to disintegrate us into tiny mini republics. That will not happen.”
According to the APC national chairman, the foundation of Nigeria is being rocked deliberately due to various ongoing agitations in the country.
“The foundation of our nation is being rocked deliberately. We promised change, but quite frankly, change of the immediacy that we promised has inevitably run against the kind of fight back that we are having today. Because of the kind of President we are lucky to have, because we have a man who is thorough. We have a man as President who insist on fairness, who insist that justice must be given its due place and that everything must take place according to due process, the powers of darkness has taken advantage of this to fight back in such a massive way that they are beginning to threaten the very foundation of our nation.
“But let me say this. With all the emphasis at my command that change there must be, that this nation will stay united. But the current new economic foundation that our President is so laboriously and painstakingly putting together, a new nation, the foundation for a new economy based on production, not based on the cheap easy resources of oil; a foundation that will sustain this nation, a foundation that will propel this nation to greatness, a foundation that is destined to make us the first, the largest and the most potent black nation on the surface of the earth is being put together.”
While thanking the organiser for the honour done to him, Oyegun confessed that: “In some cases, I think it has been a charmed life. In every sense of the word, God has been good to me. Sometimes, I say that God has been partial to me. May God be partial to you.”
Earlier, Chairman of the occasion, Senator Jim Nwobodo, while calling for peace, appealed to all the leaders and elder to call the youths to order, saying “all stakeholders, elders, leaders, religious institutions, education institutions to please call our youths to order. My generation is looking up to you our young leaders to give us the Nigeria of our dream.”
He told Chief Oyegun that: “Yours is an important position, that comes with enormous challenges; leading a party in government at the most difficult and delicate time in our country .
“As we celebrate you, we pray that God will give you the wisdom to thrive at this time. As you already know, APC is preparing for a test if of its might in the South-east , with the forthcoming governorship election in Anambra state in November. We also pray that God will guide decision in all matters concerning this election.”
Meanwhile, in another development, the Deputy National Chairman (North) of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Senator Lawal Shuaibu has expressed confidence that based on the achievements of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration, the APC will be re-elected, come 2019.
Senator Shuaibu also disclosed that the APC currently has 15.2 million members.
He made the disclosures on Friday evening when he received the Deputy Director of the Research Office, International Department of the Communist Party of China (IDCPC), Dong Weihua at the APC National Secretariat in Abuja. Weihua led a Chinese delegation on a working visit to the APC.
Senator Shuaibu who was responding to questions by the leader of the Chinese delegation on the APC’s re-election chances in 2019 said during the 2015 election campaign, the APC ran an issue-based campaign and focussed on three core areas, namely; the fight against corruption, stabilizing the economy and restoration of peace and security in the country.
He said despite the rot met on ground when the APC took over government in 2015, the current administration has quickly addressed itself to clearing the rot and delivering on election promises made to Nigerians during the campaigns.
“I make bold to say that there is no other option before Nigerians other than the APC. We inflicted a very big injury on the former ruling party in 2015. During the campaigns, we realised our own method benefitted us because our manner of campaign was devoid of any hate speech. Theirs was full of hate speech and Nigerians clearly saw the difference.
“After we took over as a government, we brought out to the open for Nigerians to see the amount of damage done to the Nigerian economy, to every fabric of the Nigerian society. Impunity became a culture. Corruption was an accepted norm. That was how we found this country. We promised Nigerians that we will fix the economy, ensure security of lives and property and fight corruption no matter who is involved.” He said.
Citing ongoing projects particularly in the transport and power sectors, He told the Chinese delegation that the current administration is implementing projects to make the country business-friendly and improve the economy.
“Our entire infrastructure as at when we started this democratic dispensation in 1999 had decayed so much that they did not require fixing by way of repair, they were so decayed that they required replacement… For businesses also, the infrastructure necessary for businesses was also absent because there was no electricity. Our transportation system was so bad that we had to extend our hands to advanced countries to help us fix our infrastructure. Nigerians today I assure you are happy that things have started moving in the right direction.
“The eyes of Nigerians are open. They know who is sincere about things. Nigerians know which party to choose when elections come in 2019. So I can assure you we are very confident in 2019 for a re-election.” Senator Shuaibu said.
He also said the current administration has rebuilt the country’s image in the international arena and entrenched the culture of democracy in the country.
“The current administration is giving people their right to vote and ensuring that their votes also count. We have also ensured the right of people to say their views, even though people in some cases have abused freedom of speech, such as hate speech, people making statements that undermine the authority of the state, sovereignty of Nigeria and unity of the country. We assure you that these challenges are not insurmountable, we will overcome them because government will within the limits established by law be able to bring everything under control and ensure that Nigeria as a country continue as one.” He said.
Speaking at the meeting, the Deputy Director of the Research Office, IDCPC, Dong Weihua who spoke through an interpreter said the Communist Party of China puts great emphasis on international exchanges with foreign political parties.
“We emphasis on political parties because we believe that parties are the source of decision making, they represent people’s will and also leads public opinion, therefore we will like to communicate and share with foreign political parties. Both APC and CPC are the ruling parties of their respective countries, I believe that we should have more opportunities to communicate and meet up, because i believe this will help promote not only the bi-lateral relationship of our two countries but also China-Africa cooperation as a whole.”
She disclosed that on October 18 the Communist Party of China will convene its 19th congress.
“This is an important political event in china. In that congress, the party will reflect on the achievements it has made in the last five years. It will also set out strategies and policies for the next five years regarding social, economic affairs as well as party building.” She said.
Responding, the APC Deputy National Chairman (North) said the Party was ready to collaborate with Communist Party of China.
“I feel very happy that the Communist Party of China is consulting with the APC. And I feel some level of collaboration could be created between our two political parties, being the ruling parties in our respective countries. There are so many areas through which we can enrich parties and our people through the exchanges as you rightly put it.” He said.