The Social Democratic Party (SDP), has observed that 19 years into democratic rule after 16 years of military, Nigeria’s challenges were causes for concern.
A statement issued by the National Secretary of the party, Alh. Shehu Musa Gabam added that the country had potentials for greatness.
“The current democratic dispensation, earned after brutal and polarising 16-year military regime, will clock 19 years. As democracy is the catalyst of national development in the modern political system, almost two decades of its application should have called from drum-beating and dancing, but Nigeria’s experience rather calls for finger-biting over failed expectations. Nineteen years after the restoration of democratic rule, Nigeria still wallows within the confines of a country with potentials for greatness, instead of living the reality of its potentials. This is a great cause for concern,” the statement read.
Recalling past leaders including, Abdulsalami Abubakar, who stated that “Our best days are yet to come,” and Olusegun Obasanjo who said, “the greatest single bane of our society [which] will be tackled head-on at all levels,” SDP said none of these statements had come to fruition.
According to the Party, the nation faces several other ailments including, “Poor leadership, as recruitment into top government positions are on the crest of cronyism, nepotism and other manifestations of godfatherism; devaluation of the currency from N90/$1 to N360/$1; the collapse of the economy, as most privatised industries are comatose or dead; high rate of unemployment, put at about 11% of the population, about 90 million Nigerians; high rate of under-employment, as graduates are encouraged to engage in low-paying menial jobs or low-value trade in the name of entrepreneurship.
Others are “Division of the country along ethnic, regional and sectarian lines; incessant killings by bandits and insurgents, such that the lives of Nigerians now seem worthless; the abuse of human rights, especially by security agencies, and the tendency of the people to engage in self-help to show their lack of confidence in the security apparatus; the lack of governance and general insecurity in rural areas, where citizens are massacred without let, as the police and other security agencies are evidently incapable of turning the tide against criminal elements and the spread of despondency among the people, to the point that they have begun to lose faith in the country and rather call for fragmentation of Nigeria along regional lines.”
The party congratulated Nigerians for the seamless democratic transition. “We wish to congratulate Nigerians because in the last 19 years, there has been a seamless transition of government from one administration and even party to another in tandem with the spirit of “demoskratos”, the Greek-word origin of democracy, which means the power of the people.”
The SDP called on Nigerian to take advantage of of the 2019 elections to effect genuine change.
“The 2019 elections are around the corner, and provide a golden opportunity for Nigerians to effect a genuine change in the leadership of the country. In the last three years, the country has been awashed with promises, as the government continues to speak to Nigerians in future tense, as if the last three years were a waste of time and resources. The task before Nigerians now is to thrown off the cloak of lamentation, taken their future into their hands by electing a progressive government into power. The Social Democratic Party (SDP) provides this opportunity. The party promises to field candidates that have the genuine interest of Nigeria at hearts, the interest of ensuring good governance, putting in place a system that would check corruption and device approaches that would stimulate the economy and bring about a better living standard. There is need to re-invent the wheel of governance in Nigeria, as the current wheel is not driving the nation to the Promised Land,” the statement further said.
The party further called on all Nigerians to vote it to power in order to redeem the country.
“The country can still be redeemed and the Social Democratic Party (SDP) is poised to deliver Nigeria from its besetting challenges. We are encouraged by the inspiring stories of countries like China, South Korea, Malaysia, Singapore and several other Asian countries who overcame the kinds of Goliath facing Nigeria today to flourish in economic prosperity. That is the future that we shall deliver,” it stated.