The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Wednesday came hard on President Muhammadu Buhari, accusing his administration of incompetence, and insisted that he should resign after the country officially slipped into economic recession.
The National Bureau of Statistics, NBS, had stated that Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product, GDP, contracted for a second quarter; this time by 2.06 per cent. This came against the backdrop of a shrinking naira and diminishing revenues occasioned by low crude prices, which have all made it extremely difficult for Nigerians to eke out a living.
Speaking hours after figures released by the NBS confirmed that Nigeria had slipped into recession; PDP, in a statement signed by its director of new media, Deji Adeyanju, said: “We join all well meaning Nigerians to call on Buhari to resign if he is unable to reverse the disastrous economic decline he has brought on Nigerians.”
The party saw the crisis as a direct consequence of Buhari’s “ineptitude and incompetent” approach to economic management which were a rehash of the “archaic and incoherent economic policies” he similarly pursued as the head of a military junta between 1983 and 1985.
“Nothing better showcases the absolute ineptitude and incompetence of the Muhammadu Buhari administration than the GDP, Inflation and unemployment figures released by the Nigerian Bureau of Statistics today,” the PDP said in a statement
“The result of these indices is that Nigeria is in its worst economic state for 29 years —dating back to 1987 when the nation had to take harsh steps to recover from President Buhari’s policies of 1984-85.
“As with 1984-85, companies are fleeing our shores in droves. Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, MAN, recently stated that 272 companies have shut down in the past one year,” Adeyanju said.
The party also quoted key aspects of the detailed data as released by the NBS on Wednesday and compared them with what they were before his party was voted out in 2015 after a 16-year streak.
“Portfolio investment declined to an estimated $245.3m in Q2 2016. This represents a 9.5% from $271.0m in Q1 2016 & is a far cry from $2.81bn in Q2 2015,” it said, adding that “A total of 4,580,602 people have lost their jobs since May 29, 2015.”
The Buhari administration, had in the statement issued on Wednesday afternoon acknowledged the gloomy economic data, but assured of improvements in an apparent bid to assuage the fears of Nigerians.
“The just released GDP figures for the 2016 second quarter by the National Bureau of Statistics while confirming a temporary decline, has (sic) also indicated an (sic) hopeful expectation in the country’s economic trajectory,” the presidency said in a statement signed by Laolu Akande.
Aso Rock attributed the negative results to the activities of oil vandals and said other aspects of the economy were yielding intended results.
But PDP, in its statement, maintained that it was unimpressed by the explanations from the presidency, stressing that “Our dismay is worsened by the fact that every sphere of the Nigerian socio-political space (ranging from the conduct of elections, human rights, respect for the rule of law, security, technology, health etc) is negatively affected by the Buhari administration.”