The federal government has described the statement by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on the release of Dapchi schoolgirls as inhuman and unpatriotic. It noted that the opposition party is plumbing the depths of infamy for saying that the adoption and release of the schoolgirls were stage-managed.
But the opposition party hit back. It insisted that the Federal Government has turned the abduction of schoolgirls into business transactions between the agents of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the Boko Haram insurgents.
No fewer than 110 students of Government Girls’ Science and Technical College, Dapchi, Yobe State, were abducted by Boko Haram insurgents on February 19. On Wednesday, March 21, 104 girls out of the 110 abducted were freed while five are said to be dead and one is still missing.
On its part, the PDP said that the abduction and release of the girls were stage-managed by both the Federal Government and the ruling party, the APC. In a statement yesterday by the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the Federal Government said such postulation portrayed the PDP as an inhuman, insensitive, unpatriotic and unworthy party.
The statement, which was signed by the minister’s Special Assistant, Segun Adeyemi, stated that the release of the Dapchi girls were negotiated by friendly countries and reputable international organisations, adding that “it would have taken a conspiracy of global proportion to have stage-managed the adoption and release of the girls.” According to Mohammed, the reaction of the PDP amounts to an expression of sour grapes, especially because the party failed woefully, when it was in power, to quickly resolve a similar abduction of schoolgirls.
“As we have said many times since the abduction of the Dapchi schoolgirls, no government is exempted from its own share of tragedies. What makes the difference is the way such tragedies are managed. “Whereas it took the PDP all of 18 days to even acknowledge the abduction of the Chibok girls in 2014, the APC Federal Government acted promptly and responsively when the Dapchi schoolgirls were abducted on February 19, 2018, hence their quick release,” the minister said. He said it was unfortunate that the PDP that failed woefully as a ruling party has also failed as an opposition party, going by its insensitive and crude response to the release of the Dapchi schoolgirls, a development, it added, that calls for non-partisan celebration.
“In its 16 years in power, the PDP redefined governance as cluelessness, massive looting of the public treasury and crude exhibition of power,” Mohammed noted.
The minister assured Nigerians that the Federal Government would intensify the ongoing efforts to secure the release of the remaining Chibok girls.
The PDP, in a statement by its national publicity secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, said the federal government should rather hide its face in shame, having been busted in its numerous lies in governance.
His words: “We hope Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the APC as well as the Federal Government are following the reactions and comments of Nigerians on this latest ruse and how their party and government are being mocked. “Your APC and government have become frustrated because you can no longer hoodwink Nigerians as you did in the past. The PDP will, therefore, overlook your intemperate reactions as signs of these times.
“However, Alhaji Lai Mohammed need not be in a hurry to defend his dishonest and dysfunctional government as he would soon have more than enough to chew.
“This administration will, at the appropriate time, provide answer to allegations that while the nation sorrow, agents of the APC are busy in financial rackets and criminal round tripping of ransoms, in foreign currencies, to service APC interests.
“The minister should be ready to explain, at the appropriate time, those behind the transactions, who got what and under what agreements, as well as the truth behind allegations of clandestine deals with insurgents.” The PDP stated that it won’t resort to lies in a bid to govern Nigeria.
The party also told the minister that it does not need any crash course on opposition politics as such “will be full of advanced syllabus on lies, falsehood, deception, and propaganda, which are patent trademarks of the APC and its controlled Federal Government.”
Ologbondiyan said that the PDP will always reply the Federal Government with facts.
“Our promise to the APC, the Federal Government and of course, Lai Mohammed, is that the PDP will never condescend to lies, deception and propaganda as we do not have any need for that.
“The PDP will, as always, remain on the side of the truth as Nigerians, across board, work together on our repositioned platform to rescue our nation from the misrule of this deceptive, dysfunctional and incompetent APC, come 2019,” Ologbondiyan said.
However, the Igbo social cultural organization, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, has described the abduction and subsequent release of Dapchi as “the height of serial, inglorious pathological deceit and hoax” the country has ever witnessed in a short period of time. National Publicity Secretary of the organisation, Prince Uche Achi-Okpaga, noted that the incident was a “good plan” marred by poor execution.
The statement reads: “The latest drama of the Dapchi schoolgirls’ release is the height of serial and inglorious pathological deceit and hoax. In their bid to make unfounded and unthinkable comparisons with the regime of Gooduck Jonathan, President Buhari and his hegemonic Fulani cabal become antithetic as they are contradictory.
“For the first time in history, instead of dropping them in an undisclosed point, the abductors brought back their captives amid cheers and jubilation from observers and even security operatives who were said to have been on their trail for three weeks now.”