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Nigeria's Economy Under APC Is Disgusting, Says Ezekwesili

January 17, 2019

Ezekwesili, who was a Minister of Education under the PDP administration led by former President Olusegun Obasanjo, said: "The more that bad governance is given to us by APC and PDP, the more that people drop into poverty".

Obiageli Ezekwesili, the presidential candidate of the Allied Congress Party of Nigeria (ACPN), says the economy under the present administration of the All Progressives Congress (APC) is "disgusting".

According to the former Minister of Education under the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) administration led by former President Olusegun Obasanjo, bad governance has led to increase in the poverty index of the country, as many youth are now jobless.

She spoke at a town hall meeting in Akure, Ondo State, as part of activities for her presidential campaign.

Speaking on the "very disgusting" state of the Nigerian economy, as she referred to it, she said: "Nigerians are fed up with the failures of governance, which has become too costly for Nigerians. Just look at us, we are now the world capital of poverty. We have overtaken India, which is even seven times of our population, as a country with the largest number poor people. There are 87 million poor people in Nigeria, which is a country of less than 200 million people. In India, there are about 1.3 billion people and there are 79 million people in extreme poverty and that is a shameful situation.

"We cannot allow it to continue. The more that bad governance is given to us by APC and PDP, the more that people drop into poverty. It is time for change of direction in our country and it is time for us too to take ourselves out of mediocrity and poor performace. It is time to become a country that is governed on the basis of knowledge and by someone who has character and competence and knows the kind of policies that can grow an economy.

"We are growing at 1.8 per cent and that is less than a percentage of our population at 2.8 per cent. You know this is distratrous. What it means is that children, men, women will be locked in permanent poverty. We must break the cycle of poverty and that is why I'm running."

According to Ezekwesili, ACPN is the only alternative that can take Nigerians out of poverty.

"We are not a party for politicians; our party is for the people and we shall focus more on the economy. Also, the government of ACPN will focus on education, instead of oil and will ensure that children of the poor compulsorily attend schools," she added.

She, however, explained that she is contesting in the presidential election to mobilise people for a new Nigeria. Ezekwesili advised Nigerians to be watchful on the antics of attempts by APC to rig the polls.

She continued: "I believe the Nigerian people must be on the alert. I do not trust this APC government of President Muhammadu Buhari. He (Buhari) has not shown himself to be trustworthy with the fact that he refused to sign into law, the electoral amendment bill of 2018.

"He should have taken that bill and signed it into law. If it was signed into law, it means we can believe in the electoral integrity of our elections and electoral umpires.Today, he (Buhari) has basically weakened the capacity of INEC. So, I do not believe in the peace accord that he signed and if it was in good faith. I don't trust the fact that Amina Zakari, who is a daughter of a man that married the sister of the president is part of the conduct of 2019 election.

"I don't believe a lot of things around the way that the government is trying to execute the 2019 elections, but I believe in the Nigeria people and they would not allow anyone dismantle our hard-won democracy. This democracy, people died and were also maimed fighting for this democracy. This democracy is greater than President Buhari and his administration. This democracy will survive Buhari.

"The Nigerian people are saying both the APC and PDP governments have failed and they must go, so that we can build a new nation. ACPN too would also do a proper restructuring of the country in order to allow every region to develop its own resources.

"For us to have a great Nigeria, we must join hands together to build a 21st century country which would attract people from other countries to learn from us. We are in a new dispensation and I want you to join me in building a new and greater Nigeria that would be prosperous."