The Peoples Democratic Party Governors’ Forum and the party’s National Working Committee have expressed opposition to the usage of $1 billion from the Excess Crude Account in the prosecution of the fight against Boko Haram and other crimes.
This was one of the highlights of the outcome of the meeting of the PDP Governors and members of the NWC in Asaba, the Delta State capital, on Sunday.
According to the communique of the meeting, signed by the National Chairman of the party, Prince Uche Secondus, and the Chairman of the PDPGF and Ekiti State Governor, Ayo Fayose, it was wrong in the first place for the National Economic Council to have taken the decision to release such money to the Federal Government.
The party said the approval for such spending lies with the National Assembly and State Houses of Assembly.
The party said: “The PDP states and local governments are vehemently opposed to the unilateral withdrawal of USD1Billion from the Excess Crude Account by the Federal Government under any guise. We want to state unequivocally that neither the Governors’ Forum nor the Federal Executive Council has the power of appropriation of Federation Accounts, as such powers reside with the National and State Assemblies.”
The party also condemned the failure of President Muhammadu Buhari to put an end to the killings by herdsmen in the country.
It said setting up a committee on the issue was not the solution.
It said: “We strongly condemn the unabated killings across the country. We call on Mr. President to come out clean on the herdsmen killings and address the nation on how to end the carnage. The President must take responsibility on the protection of lives and property of Nigerians which is the most important of his responsibilities. We believe that the Federal Government’s decision to set up a Committee to address the issues of herdsmen killings is a pretentious approach to a matter that requires firm action and leadership by the President in line with his oath of office to protect all Nigerians irrespective of creed, tribe and political affiliation.”
On the restructuring of the country as espoused by the All Progressives Congress, the communique of the meeting said: “The Peoples Democratic Party has been the author of restructuring and this was further expressed in the Report of the 2014 National Conference. The All Progressives Congress as a later day convert of restructuring is merely paying lip service to a matter of national importance. However, we have mandated our members in the National Assembly to immediately commence the process of initiating a Bill to address issues bothering on restructuring.”
So also did the party frown at the failure of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission to obey court rulings.
It urged President Buhari to henceforth direct the EFCC to adhere to the Rule of Law by obeying court judgements and orders such as the one involving the Ekiti State Government against EFCC and restrain itself from further political intimidation and harassment of known or perceived political opponents.
The party went on to commend the judiciary for its commitment to the enthronement of constitutional democracy in the face of what it described as “intimidation and harassment”.
On the recent discovery that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation was still engaged in the payment of fuel subsidy, the party said: “We condemn in strong terms the massive corruption going on in the management of fuel subsidy regime which the Federal Government had declared non existent while billions of Naira are deducted monthly at Federation Accounts Allocation Committee meetings.”
The meeting commended members of the party for their unalloyed support, adding that with its repositioning, it was prepared for the 2019 elections and will ensure that all Nigerians aspiring to elective offices are free to contest on the platform of the PDP.
It added: “We want to assure that no established organ of the party is allowed to align with any presidential aspirant. We thank the people and government of Delta State for playing host to this all important meeting.”