Governors elected under the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) have told President Bola Tinubu to work in concert with the states to produce enduring solutions to the nation’s security and economic problems.
Rising from a meeting under the PDP Governors Forum on Monday in Abuja, they voiced concern over the hardship faced by Nigerians as a result of the twin problems of insecurity and economic downturn.
Reading a communique issued at the end of the meeting hosted by Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State, the governors lamented the free-falling value of the naira and called for measures to halt the trend.
They pledged to continue to play their part in the effort to bring security and succour to the people.
The PDP GF reiterated its demand for state police to deal effectively with the myriad of security challenges confronting the sub-national.
They threw their weights behind the PDP National Working Committee (NWC) led by the acting national chairman, Iliya Damangun, and urged the national leadership to set in motion the necessary machinery to convene meetings of the party organs including the National Executive Committee (NEC) as soon as possible.
The communique read in part: “The meeting reviewed the State of the Nation and noted the hardship being faced by Nigerians as a result of the economic and security challenges facing the nation.
“The Forum consequently urges the Federal Government to as a matter of urgency embark on initiatives involving all the sub national governments to bring a lasting solution to the crises.
“The PDP Governors will continue to play their part in the effort to bring security and succour to our people.
“To this end, we reiterate our call for State Police with appropriate safeguards to avoid any abuse or overreach by any tier of government.
“The Forum decried the falling value of the Naira and requested the monetary and fiscal authorities to find appropriate solutions.
“The meeting further reviewed recent developments in the Peoples Democratic Party and committed to leading efforts to revamp and reposition the party to serve as an effective opposition to the ruling Party in Nigeria.
“Furthermore, the Forum passed a vote of confidence in the Iliya Damagum led National Working Committee (NWC) of the Party and urged it to put in motion the machinery for convening meetings of the appropriate organs of the party – from Caucus to National Executive Committee (NEC) as soon as possible.”
Fielding questions after delivering the communique, Governor Mohammed dismissed insinuation that the main opposition leader has lost its voice amid growing hardship in the country.
He warned that even though the party supported the removal of petroleum subsidy, the free-fall of the naira has placed the country on the road to Venezuela in reference to the South American country’s endless economic woes.
He said the PDP has continued to performed its role as opposition without being insulting.
The Bauchi governor explained: “PDP is the most democratic party, the most experienced party in the country. We have been at the seat of governance and Nigerians took a decision to bring APC at the centre and we respect their sensibilities and sense of judgement of Nigerians.
“What we are doing is giving positive criticism to the obnoxious policies of the federal government.
“But at the onset of this administration, we supported the removal of subsidy, we believed that there were safeguards, we believed that if we took collective decisions, we should go by it.
“But certainly, we have seen that it is a free fall for the naira. The cost of living is going high, we are almost on the road to Venezuela.
“So we are giving concrete opposition but not insulting anybody. But ultimately the decision squarely rests with Nigerians and other organs in the country to make sure that we do things that will bring succour to all of us.”
Nevertheless, he said, states are working with the federal government on the rising cost of living, saying: “We are working closely with the federal government since the inception of this administration. The rising cost of living is not only under the purview of the federal government. We have been partnering together with them to make sure that we don’t bring any distraction but the monetary and economic policies rests squarely with the federal government.
“The majority of Nigerians voted for this administration, so we are doing so much across party lines and on bi-partisan basis, within the Nigeria governors forum within the National Economic Council to make sure that we cushion the effects of some of these policies.
“We have reached out to our people and opened the food reserves in a manner that it will provide some succour to our people at the lower level.”
On the forthcoming Edo State governorship election, the said PDP governors are determined to ensure the victory of the party, which he noted, has no crisis in the state.
“We are 100 percent behind Edo and you can see that there is no rancour, there is no division and we are very much behind the National Workings Committee, the state chapter of the party and indeed the governor to make sure that we go together in unison to produce a successor for the most respected eldest governor in the governors forum,” he declared.
Governors who attended the meeting include Mohammed (chairman), Siminalayi Fubara of Rivers State (vice chairman), Makinde of Oyo State (host), Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri (Adamawa State), Caleb Mutfwang (Plateau State), Dauda Lawal (Zamfara State), Kefas Agbu (Taraba State), Godwin Obaseki (Edo State); Dep. Governor Ifeanyi Ossai (Enugu State), and Dep Governor. Monday John Onyeme (Delta State).