PDP, CSOs fume as Buhari absolves self of corruption

PDP, CSOs fume as Buhari absolves self of corruption

The President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), has said no one can accuse him of owning illicitly acquired companies or properties anywhere in the country.

Buhari said this on Thursday during a town hall meeting with South-East leaders during his one-day official visit to Imo State.

The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, disclosed this in a statement titled, ‘I want to be remembered as a President who stabilised Nigeria, President Buhari tells South-East leaders.’

But the opposition Peoples Democratic Party and other groups described Buhari’s regime as the most corrupt in the country.

Earlier, Adesina in the statement said the President stated that he would want to be remembered as the President who stabilised Nigeria in the area of security, economic prosperity and triumph over corruption.

He also said, “Nobody can accuse me of having companies or mansions anywhere in the country and I thank God that I try to keep myself as clean as possible so that I cannot be taken hostage.

“I will do my best to ensure that Nigerians that try hard, succeed in their efforts,’’ he said.

Buhari’s regime the most corrupt in Nigeria’s history – PDP

But the PDP said Nigerians would remember the All Progressives Congress-led regime of the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), as the most corrupt in recent memory.

The National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Kola Ologbondiyan said this in a telephone interview with one of our correspondents, in Abuja, on Thursday.

Ologbondinyan said, “When the history of corruption and corrupt regimes are written in Nigeria, this regime led by President Buhari will go down as the most corrupt. It is not enough to say ‘I am clean,’ what about your associates? What about APC leaders who have stolen billions and were simply eased out of government?

“What about those accused of corruption, who simply moved from opposition political parties and their alleged sins became automatically forgiven?

“What about the financial scandals in NNPC, FIRS, Customs, NHIS where billions of taxpayers’ money have been frittered away with nobody held to account because the perpetrators are either close to the Presidency or are members of the APC?”

Attempts to get a response from the governing party were futile; calls to the mobile telephone number of the National Secretary of the party, Senator John Akpanudoedehe, were neither picked nor returned.

A response to a text message sent to him was still being awaited as at the time of filing this report.

‘You can’t exonerate yourself’

Similarly, civil society organisations  faulted the claim by the President that he could not be said to be corrupt.

The Executive Director, Human and Environmental Development Agenda, Olarewaju Suraju, said, “The President cannot exonerate himself if people working under him have been accused of corruption. He is the one Nigerians voted for, even if he had not stolen as a person, that is not enough to say people working under him have not been found wanting.”

The Founder, Follow The Money, Hamzat Lawal, said, “You can’t say you are clean if people around you have been marred with various corruption allegations and you come out and say you are clean. “

On his part, Dare Ariyo-Toye dared the President to make public his assets declaration form.

He said, “I’d like to advise the President to make public his updated 2019 Assets Declaration Form to prove his worth before boasting publicly.”

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