The Peoples Democratic Party has told President Muhamamdu Buhari and his deputy, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, that cutting their salaries will not be the only thing Nigerians are expecting from them.
Rather, the party said the President and his party, the All Progressives Congress, must strive to fulfil their electioneering promises.
Moreover, the party said that salary is a mere drop in the ocean of personal allowances and privileges that come to the president.
The main opposition party, which had been ruling Nigerian since 1999 until it was defeated during the last general elections, also said rejection of official cars by the President won’t be enough to sway the expectations of the voters from the new government.
National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Chief Olisa Metuh, stated this in a statement he signed in Abuja on Tuesday.
T he President and his deputy on Friday, announced 50 per cent cut in their own salaries.
The President also, on Thursday, rejected new bullet proofs cars worth over N400m.
While Metuh said that the PDP appreciated the gestures by the President, he insisted that the APC was over-dramatising the achievements of the Federal Government.
Metuh therefore warned Buhari against celebrating what he called “cosmetic governance.”
Metuh said his party believed that there was a need to bring to the President’s notice certain indices, he said, if not properly corrected, were capable of derailing the smooth running of his (Buhari’s) administration.
He said in the statement, “It is incontrovertible that instead of focusing on the promises you made to Nigerians and on policy thrusts that will move our economy forward, the ruling party has been made to be very high on propaganda, deceitful engagement and cosmetic governance.
“We believe you should extricate yourself from these agents of propaganda who continue to believe that Nigerians would be swayed by these cosmetic interventions instead of real business of government.
“As the leader of the most populous black nation in the world, we believe you should not allow your Presidency to be pushed into the gimmicks of playing to the gallery and attempting to use the dramatisation of promissory notes and pledges by foreign interests, false premature claims of victory against insurgency.
“Dramatisation of salary cut and rejection of official cars, all to gain cheap popularity and create an impression that the government is on course when in the actual fact, the new administration has not been able to locate a bearing since its inauguration in May.
“While we appreciate the symbolic gesture by Mr. President in ‘cutting’ his N14 million annual basic salary by 50 percent, it should be noted that Nigerians would not be wavered by the N7million annual donation and rejection of official cars, and forget their expectations for the implementation of his long list of campaign promises for which he was elected into office.”
Metuh added that the Presidency should know that “these orchestration,” no matter how populist it may seem, does not in any way address the burning issues of employment, alleged worsening security situation and decline in the economy.
He said the President should also be aware of the continued slide of the Naira which, he said, has dipped from under N200 to the dollar in May to an all time low of N238 under the APC administration among others.
Moreover, Metuh said that Nigerians cannot therefore be deluded by impressions aimed to make government appear to be on course when, he said, it has only been a case of what he called all motion, no movement, spiced with unnecessary excuses.
He said Nigerians are now agitated that this government has failed to hit the ground running as it promised.
For example, he said they had been complaining about the inability of the President to unveil his cabinet two weeks after his inauguration.
Besides, he said two months after, the President has not been able to decide on key appointments such as ministers, Secretary to the Government of the Federation, a Chief of Staff and advisers in key sectors of the economy.
Metuh said Nigerians are still eager for information regarding the five million new jobs, monthly N5,000 each to 25 million poor citizens, monthly allowance to discharged but unemployed Youth Corps members, free meals to school children and bringing the Naira to the same value with the dollar; among other promises upon which you and your party gained access to power.