Nigerians in difficult moment over fuel subsidy removal, says Adamu, APC chair
Abdullahi Adamu, the national chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), has acknowledged that the removal of fuel subsidies has put Nigerians through a trying and difficult time.
He spoke yesterday at the APC Progressive Governors’ Forum (PGF) meeting of the National Working Committee (NWC) and governors in Abuja, which was presided over by Governor Hope Uzodimma of Imo State, the PGF’s newly elected Chairman.
There were 10 governors present: Imo, Uzodimma, Yobe, Mai Mala Buni, Kogi, Yahaya Bello, Nasarawa, Abdullahi Sule, Niger, Mohammed Umar Bago, Kaduna, Ubah Sani, Gombe, Mohammed Inua Yahaya, and Kebbi, Nasir Idris.
The removal of the fuel subsidy will be very difficult for Nigerians, especially the state governors where it matters the most, Adamu admitted to the governors, stating that they have come into power at a very trying time.
Assuring them that the party will not only provide them with all the support they need to succeed, he also advised them to be prepared to bear their crosses in their respective states.
“We want to say to you that you should adhere to the manifesto as much as you can,” Adamu said. We have a general framework for the country’s governance, and since you represent those who fly the party’s flag, it is expected that you will always keep the party’s platform before you when making decisions.
“You, as the chief executive officers of the states, must pay attention to this manifesto, but there are particulars, priorities, and obligations you must meet in order to live up to the expectations of those who voted for us.
“We are in a very trying time, and you have come at a very trying time. This will be extremely difficult for us, especially for you since you are where it counts the most, even with the timing of the lifting of the fuel subsidy. You serve as the states of the federation’s shock absorbers from national politics. You coexist with the populace. The people are there when you wake up and go to work with them. As a citizen of this nation, it is hoped that you will be able to better understand their suffering. As such, there will be a lot of pressure on you as the leaders of this great nation’s federating units.
We will provide you with all the assistance you require as far as the party is concerned. You can come to us with any issues, and we’ll provide you with the best guidance we can. You are the one wearing the shoes, though, so you are aware of where it pinches, no matter what we do with you.
“The actual governance period is two years. Before you know it, the tribunals will be over, the two-year mark will have passed, and you will begin to see newspaper publications, flying billboards, and posters. Happily or unhappily, this is a tradition in our democracy. We have to be prepared for that. Therefore, you cannot waste any time.
Fortunately, you have a president who will pay attention to you. He arrived with the same urge to deliver and desire. You, therefore, have luck. But remember that you will carry your cross in everything you do.
“As a party, we won’t obstruct your pursuit of a worthwhile programme. If you see someone doing this, please let us know so we can put a stop to it,” he said.
The meeting was postponed, according to Adamu, because “it has been our intention to have the opportunity to receive our governors immediately after the gubernatorial and states Houses of Assembly elections.” But right after those elections, our new president-elect left for a brief five-week trip abroad.
“We believed that it was best for him to be on the ground before holding the meeting in order to have an important meeting like that of the governors and the party. By the time he returned, the discussion about the distribution of power in the National Assembly had become raging, which had dampened our enthusiasm.
Because of this, he explained, “We got involved in trying to see how best we can come to some understanding and before we got over that, we had inaugural activities and we are better positioned now to settle down, to invite our governors.”