The minority leader of the Nigerian Senate, Enyinnaya Abaribe has blamed President Muhammadu Buhari and the All Progressive Congress (APC) government for the socio-economic woes bedevilling the country and leading it to precipice.
Abaribe apportioned the blame in Abuja on Monday while fielding questions from journalists at leadership capacity training, organised by the minority leader of the House of Representatives, Ndudi Elumelu for the newly elected local government council chairmen and councillors from his Constituency in Delta State.
He accused the APC government of making many wrong choices which were mostly based on nepotistic recognition and elevation of some ethnic groups over and above others for political appointments.
The minority leader said part of the country’s problem was assessing people based on where they come from, rather than their character, stressing that the wrong assessment was mostly done by the current government, leading the country to the brink.
Abaribe said: ”I am telling Nigerians today that what we are looking for in Nigeria is an assessment of people not by where they come from but by character.
I think that’s where the real problem of Nigeria is situated because we have made choices and those choices have not been made on the basis of people being the correct people to do one or the other thing.
“We have made choices on the basis of where you come from and this particular government has been most egregious in making these wrong choices and that’s why it is leading us to the precipice today.”
In his remarks, Femi Gbajabiamila, speaker of the House of Representatives, said the present system which places emphasis on the centralised policy planning and implementation at the Federal Government level has not served the country well, hence it becomes obligatory to change the status quo in favour of an alternative that serves present needs and meets future expectations.
“At the same time there is an evident need to improve the capacity of those who serve in local government administration across the country. Political leaders cannot give what they do not have. You can only deliver governance and outcomes to the extent of the skills you have and the understanding you possess,” he said.
Gbajabiamila, who stressed the need to give recourse to the principle of separation of powers, urged the newly elected Chairmen and Councilors to be bold in discharging their constitutional mandates even at the risk of offending some people.
On his part, the minority leader, Elumelu expressed optimism that the training will equip the newly elected council officials with requisite leadership qualities and to be better representatives of the people.