20th December, 2010
The Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) has raised an alarm over the worsening campaign for the presidential ticket of the PDP, saying the unprecedented intra-party acrimony is threatening the existence of the country.
In a statement issued in Lagos at the weekend by its National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the party said never in the history of Nigeria has there been such a bitter contest for a partyâ€™s ticket, as the nation is now witnessing between President Goodluck Jonathan and former Vice President Atiku Abubakar.
It said a fallout of the dirty and bitter campaign has been the endless manipulation of the countryâ€™s electoral law, to such an extent that no one yet knows the position of the law, less than a few months to the conduct of the 2011 general elections.
â€˜â€™Threats and counter-threats are flying around. Words like violent change, treason and destablisation are being used freely,when all that Nigerians would like to hear are how each candidate will help turn around the fortunes of the country if elected,â€™â€™ the party said.
ACN said both sides have crossed the line of decency in trying to outwit one another, with various nebulous groups using newspaper advertisements to splash mud and more mud on the opposing candidate.
It said that because those who constitute the leadership of the morally-deficient PDP have been compromised one way or another, they lack the moral authority or the conviction to stop what has now become a dogfight.
“A party that prides itself as the largest political party in Africa cannot even agree on how to pick its candidates! What more evidence is needed to confirm that the PDP is a house built on sand, which will eventually collapse?
“Unfortunately, the desperation on both sides is not borne out of the candidatesâ€™ love for Nigeria, or how prepared they are to lead Nigeria out of the doldrums to which it has been consigned by a succession of inept leaders, especially in the last 10 years plus of democratic rule.
“Had these candidates been genuinely interested in taking Nigeria to greater heights, their campaign would have been dominated by issues relevant to the countryâ€™s situation – how to solve our chronic infrastructural problems, the worsening power situation and massive unemployment that is threatening the social order, just to name a few.
“Instead, they are expending critical energy and huge funds on mudslinging, on painting each other as either largely inexperienced and unprepared for the demands of office, or as chronically corrupt and unfit for high office,â€™â€™ the party said.
It said even far worse than this, speculations are rife that supporters of each candidate will resort to violence if their candidate does not clinch the PDP presidential ticket in January.
“In other words, it is either they win the ticket or the country goes down! This is a scary development that must be of concern to all Nigerians. We, therefore, call on all citizens to shun these candidates and their parties so that our country can at least survive. Without a country, there will be no need to fight for its leadership!â€™â€™ ACN said.