The All Progressives Congress (APC) has called on those in charge of the country’s affairs, led by President Goodluck Jonathan, to hold themselves to higher standards of conduct as a way of ensuring good governance and winning global respect for the country.
In a statement issued in Lagos on Sunday by its Interim National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the party said the resignation of South Korean Prime Minister Chung Hong-won, over his government’s much-criticized poor handling of the April 16th ferry disaster that left over 300 dead or missing, must jolt the conscience of Nigerian officials who have been found wanting when they have found themselves in similar situations.
”Until our leaders hold themselves to higher standards, as it is done in other democracies around the world, and take responsibility when necessary, they will continue to perpetuate impunity, celebrate mediocrity and cling to power at all cost, even when it is clear that they are not serving any other interest but theirs,” it said.
APC said the resignation of the South Korean Prime Minister was the culmination of widespread public criticism of the government over the handling of the ferry disaster, especially the slow pace of recovery of the bodies of victims and the conflicting information given by the government over the tragedy.
The Prime Minister also stepped down even though he had paid a visit to the families of the victims, just like the President of South Korea.
”Compare this with the situation in our country, where about 20 job seekers died in a stampede that was directly caused by poor planning and execution by a government agency on March 15th 2014, and for which the supervising minister blamed the victims instead of accepting responsibility.
”Compare this with the aftermath of the killing of 75 citizens and wounding of over 200 in a bombing at a bus station in Nyanya, after which the President quickly embarked on an illegal campaign rally in Kano during which he was dancing ‘Skelewu’ on the graves of the victims, or his trip to Ibadan for a birthday party.
”Compare this with business-as-usual posture of the Federal Government and the playing up of the controversy surrounding Tuesday’s political rally by the PDP in Adamawa State, even as over 200 school girls have continued to languish in the den of the insurgents in the Sambisa Forest.
”Till date, President Jonathan has not visited the families of the abducted school children to offer them support and succour, neither has he visited the families of the students who were brutally murdered in Yobe in February. We cannot continue like this if we really want our country to be seen as a worthy member of the comity of nations,” the party said.
It called on President Jonathan, who has been disingenuously portrayed as Nigeria’s equivalent of Nelson Mandela, Barack Obama and other great leaders of our time, to lead the way in showing that Nigeria is indeed a part of the civilized world, where every human life is considered worthy and sacrosanct.
”Politics must not stand in the way of decency and human sensibilities. Re-election campaign must not take precedence over the welfare and security of Nigerians. It is time for President Jonathan to show leadership,” APC said.