The National Chairman of the ruling All Progressives Congress, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, has criticised the Ekiti State Governor, Mr. Ayodele Fayose, and other opposition leaders over their comments on President Muhammadu Buhari’s foreign trips, describing their statements as insensitive.
Odigie-Oyegun and the Deputy National Chairman (South) of the APC, Chief Segun Oni, also said that the governor’s letter to the Chinese government not to grant Nigeria a $2bn loan was a display of ignorance on issues affecting the country by Fayose.
Odigie-Oyegun, who stated this while speaking with journalists in Benin on Sunday, noted that critics opposed to the nation’s growth and development were bent on frustrating the efforts of the APC-led administration and the President to rescue the country from the ongoing fuel crisis and revitalise the ailing economy.
Fayose had last week written a letter to the Chinese government, asking it to shun President Buhari’s proposal to secure a $2bn loan for Nigeria.
The governor, in his letter to President Xi Jinping of China, said Nigerians were “totally opposed to increment of the country’s debt burden, which is already being serviced with 25 per cent of the Federal Government annual budget.
But the APC national chairman said, “Most people do not recognise the very sorry state of the nation’s economy and the fact that the country’s economy was ran aground and the crashed economy which contributed in no small measure towards the crash of crude oil from N120 per barrel to a miserable N30 to N40 per barrel at the international market.
“I hope Fayose did not really do what we are told he did. I don’t think even he is capable as descending into these low depths. But if he did, I feel sorry for him and the people of the state. Nigerians should ask Fayose what he was doing in China. Anyway, we are not bothered; the President is not bothered.”
In a statement from his Media Office, Oni said Fayose needed spiritual deliverance from emotional bondage.
Oni said, “Governor Fayose was in his characteristic state of hallucination when he wrote the letter and claimed, while reveling in his world of ecstatic fantasy, to be voicing the opinion of Nigerians.
“Fayose’s seemingly strange behaviour is not strange to people like us, as he is only behaving to type.
“We called the attention of the people to his conduct years ago, during his first term as governor, after the under-the-barb-wire drama at the airport, that any governor, who chooses to pass under the barb-wire at an international airport, whatever the circumstance, cannot be a normal person and should have his fitness for the exalted office ascertained.”
Oni added that his opinion about the governor, in this regard, had not changed.
He appealed to “sincere associates of Governor Fayose, who love him genuinely, to take steps towards affirming his emotional and psychological stability in order to save him from himself.”
Odigie-Oyegun also maintained that having won the 2015 presidential election on the basis of his personal integrity, experience and “the respect he (Buhari) commands, not only in the country but also across the world, President Buhari is on a mission to rescue the nation from her present socio-political and economic challenges.”
He said, “In a situation where the world has become a global village, where a rapid revival depends on the understanding of the rest of the world, the President has taken his prestige and time around the whole world to polish our image which has been badly damaged in order to make it possible for world leaders to want to deal with a new Nigeria and to get the type of resources and the expertise that we need badly.”
Defending Buhari’s foreign trips, Odigie-Oyegun added, “We do not have the resources to take down to revive the economy. So, what the President is doing is at great inconveniences to his person. Don’t forget that he was a military officer, he trained abroad and he had been to most parts of the world, it is not as if he is entertaining joy in spending sleepless days in one country to another.
“Everything he has done, including the foreign tours, is to gather all the support that is necessary to make a dramatic impact on the condition of Nigeria as quickly as possible.”
“The countries he has visited are critical to peace in Nigeria or to our economic speedy revival. The long and short of it is that Mr. President is getting the world to respect and know the new Nigeria and to be ready to help to revive the Nigerian economy,” he added.