The Federal Government on Tuesday called on the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to go the whole hog with its apology to Nigerians by returning all the funds looted from the public treasury during the 16 years it was in charge of the nation’s affairs and resources.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, who made this call in a statement issued in Abuja by his special assistant, Segun Adeyemi, also challenged the party to show the genuineness of its apology through a discernible change of attitude.
National Chairman of the PDP, Uche Secondus, had on Monday apologised to Nigerians for mistakes the party made while in power, stating that “I hereby, as the National Chairman, do admit that the PDP made a lot of mistakes; we are humans, not spirits and the ability to admit is key in moving forward.
“We admit that we have made several mistakes; we have passed through all our challenges and have acquired the experience no other party can boast of. We were sanctioned by Nigerians at the polls in 2015; let me use this opportunity to apologise for our past mistakes.
“It is the honest thing to do, a legacy to transfer to our children; we cannot continue like that. When we make mistakes, we should come out boldly to the people and apologise.”
Reacting, Mohammed claimed that the PDP presided over an unprecedented looting of the public treasury, perhaps the worst of its kind in Nigeria or anywhere else in the world, stressing that “the best evidence of penitence for such a party is not just to own up and apologize, but to also return the looted funds. Anything short of that is mere deceit”.
The statement reads in part, “Even with the paucity of funds, this Administration has spent an unprecedented amount of money on infrastructural development and Social Investment Programme, among others. Returning looted funds will provide more money for these programmes and make life more meaningful for Nigerians. There is no better apology than that”.
The minister also reminded the main opposition party of the quote: ”If you find yourself in a hole; stop digging,” stressing that it applies to the PDP at this time.
According to him, “PDP, press the reset button. Stop sabotaging the work of this Administration, which is packing the mess you left behind, through your reckless statements and unfounded allegations. Play responsible opposition politics. Put Nigeria’s interest over and above partisan interest. Temper your desperation to return to power. Spend quality time in the purgatory and you will be forgiven”.