The Buhari Media Organisation (BMO) has said that the new leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is not different from previous ones in terms of zeal for converting public funds to private use under any guise.
The group said in a statement signed by its Chairman Niyi Akinsiju and Secretary Cassidy Madueke, that the emergence of a self-confessed beneficiary of misappropriated funds from the office of the National Security Adviser as PDP chairman is a clear evidence of this assertion.
“On the surface, the choice of former Senate President Iyorchia Ayu as a replacement for Uche Secondus after several months of crisis could have been a master-stroke, but the snag is that, like many senior opposition figures, he is not free from the financial malfeasance that signposted 16 years of PDP misrule.
There is no greater pointer to Ayu’s lack of credibility than opposition to his then leadership in the National Assembly that was championed by his own people from the Middle Belt Caucus. Iyorchia Ayu’s tenure as a Minister also needs to be scrupulously examined in view of several reported and unreported incidents which put a question mark on his integrity, cumulating in his fallout with, and a subsequent sack by President Olusegun Obasanjo.
“Here is a man who admitted to collecting N345m from the NSA office purportedly for security and electoral consultancy. However, a cursory look at the 19-count charge filed against former NSA Sambo Dasuki showed that the amount was transferred from funds meant for arms purchase to two accounts of a company ‘controlled by Emmanuel Lawani on behalf of Iyorchia Ayu, for the construction of a shopping mall at Jabi, Abuja; “purporting same to be payment for satellite charges and security equipment”, thereby committing an offence punishable under section 315 of the penal code Act, Cap 532, Vol. 4 Laws of the Federation 2004’.
“So for us, the fact that the new PDP chairman is a beneficiary of sleaze, of misappropriated funds shared to the party leaders in 2014 is true to the character of a party which has almost always had national chairmen whose names have featured in court documents.
“We recall that aside from allegations that forced Secondus out of office, he was mentioned in the $1.6bn fraud trial of an oil dealer, Jide Omokore, for collecting 25 exotic cars bought with millions of naira suspected to be proceeds of oil fraud.
“One of his predecessors, Adamu Muazu, was also named by a prosecution witness, who is a car dealer, as a beneficiary of 23 exotic cars from the same source”.
Considering his record, it is doubtful if Iyiorcha Ayu can give any positive leadership to a party that wants to lead Nigeria. The choice of Ayu, therefore, shows that the PDP is unrepentant in its brazen efforts at dragging Nigeria back into the days of pillaging our commonwealth.
BMO also accused PDP of indulging in what it has always falsely accused President Muhammadu Buhari of in the composition of its National Working Committee (NWC).
“There is hardly a time that the opposition has not accused the President and his administration of ‘mismanaging the nation’s diversity, even in the face of contrary views, but PDP has proved that it cannot be trusted to practice what it preaches.
“It is a fact that 18 out of the 21 NWC members emerged by consensus, yet there was no effort by the party to ensure religious or regional balancing or keep to its vow of giving women a major say in party affairs.
“We wonder how a party that has proved to be incapable of managing diversity in its rank can do differently at the national level.
“But we also know that Nigerians can easily see through the vacuous pledges to rescue Nigeria when it is obvious how the party pillaged and looted everything in sight between 1999 and 2015.
“It was so bad that the party leaders even looted the N21bn realised at two fundraising events for its abandoned PDP headquarters complex which was estimated at N10bn”.