The All Progressives Congress (APC) has charged the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to explain to Nigerians the status of the $460 million Abuja Closed-Circuit Television (CCTV) awarded in August 2010. But the main opposition party has told the ruling party that its allegation on the $460 million CCTV project was frivolous.
Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the APC, Yekini Nabena, who made the demand on behalf of the ruling party, also asked the PDP to explain the rationale of the over $2 billion China loan the PDP administration took between 2010 and 2013; the $16 billion spent on the power sector; the fuel subsidy rackets as well as the counter-insurgency funds that were allegedly diverted and shared to political cronies.
The challenge came on the heels of a statement credited to former Vice- President Atiku Abubakar on the standard sovereign guarantee and sovereign immunity clause embedded in Nigeria’s loan agreements with China to fund the ongoing national railway projects.
The PDP also called for a review of loan agreements the Buhari administration signed with multilateral institutions. Nabena, who described the statements credited to Atiku as ‘unresearched’, unintelligent and pedestrian, said the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, had explained the guarantee clause in the loan deals as being in line with standard practice irrespective of the country granting the loan.
“Perhaps, Atiku and the PDP could redirect their energies to explaining to Nigerians the status of the failed $460 million Abuja Closed-Circuit Television (CCTV) awarded in August 2010 by the immediate-past PDP administration,” he said. It could be recalled that the failed CCTV project was initiated by late President Umaru Yar’Adua and awarded in August 2010 by former President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration to help security agencies check the growing insecurity in the Federal Capital Territory.
According to Nabena, since the agreement was signed, Nigeria has been servicing this loan to China while Nigerians are yet to attest to the visibility of CCTV project and unable to explain the status of the video surveillance project. He said the matter was supposedly subject to a legislative probe.
“In all of these, we are starkly reminded that the PDP remains a corrupted and damaged product. Nigerians must continue to reject the party at all levels of government. “In the area of fiscal discipline, prudence, curbing leakages, are we currently getting it right?
An emphatic yes! Every kobo expended on infrastructure counts. Verifiable evidence abound in the fast expanding national railway projects, airport remodelling among other critical infrastructure projects being undertaken by the President Muhammadu Buhari government.
The days of phoney contracts as institutionalised by successive PDP administrations are fast fading,” Nabena said.
Meanwhile, the PDP said the allegation was a cover up to APC’s complicity in mortgaging the future of the country through foreign loans. PDP National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, in a statement, said APC’s reaction to the attempt to send future generation of Nigerians to China on slavery showed that the party is anti-people and has no remorse for the wrongdoing of its leaders and government.
“Our party takes exception to the purported challenge by the APC and we counsel the APC to first give account of the N800 billion it claimed to have recovered, as Nigerians have regrettably come to discover that the APC thrives on fraud and corruption.
“Perhaps the APC leaders, in their deceptive posturing, failed to note that President Muhammadu Buhari had already told the world that his officials swim in ocean of corruption,” PDP stated.
The party warned President Buhari to stop providing official cover for alleged corrupt members of his party and government.
“Rather than engaging in baseless counter allegations, Nigerians expect the APC and its government to first respond to revelations that they have mortgaged the sovereignty of our nation for their selfish benefits.
“They must also respond to the demand by Nigerians to prosecute the officials already indicted by President Buhari.
“Until they do so, the APC and its government should hide their faces in shame and await the judgement of Nigerians in 2023,” party advised.