The Buhari Media Organisation (BMO) has said that much of Nigeria’s public debt under the current government was inherited from the Goodluck Jonathan administration.
The BMO said this when it accused the new National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Mr Iyorchia Ayu of engaging in what it termed “criminal revisionism” in his comparison of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration with previous governments.
The group said in a statement signed by its Chairman Niyi Akinsiju and Secretary Cassidy Madueke, that it was criminal for an academic to seek to manipulate recent history in the name of partisan politics.
“Our attention has been drawn to a recent interview that Ayu granted the Hausa Service of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) in which he claimed that the country had recorded no progress in the Buhari years.
“We only hope that local media which reported the interview in English did not misrepresent his words because it would be the height of deceit for an academic to make spurious claims that cannot be backed with hard facts.
“As much as we know that the PDP chairman has to play politics in line with his new role, we believe it would not be out of place for him to restrict himself to criticising the All Progressives Congress APC-led government with verifiable facts.
“Because aside from twisting details of the economy in the PDP era, the one-time Senate President also made false claims on security challenges in the Obasanjo and Yar’Adua years.
“Before going into details, let us again reaffirm that Nigeria’s actual public debt stands at 87.24billion out of which the PDP incurred 63billion dollars in spite of presiding over an oil boom era during which the country made 381.9billion dollars from oil proceeds alone, between 2010 and 2014.
“Nigerians can easily see that the Buhari era loans are tied to visible infrastructural projects, but we urge them to learn to challenge PDP leaders to tell us all they spent all those loans on rather than allow them to engage in petty politics,” it added.
BMO insisted that President Buhari has done better in six years than previous governments in several sectors of the economy.
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“We make bold to say that Nigeria has recorded improvements in a number of sectors under President Buhari, contrary to PDP’s worn-out falsehood.
“For starters, the poverty figure that APC and the President Buhari inherited was of 112m Nigerians or 67.1 per cent of 170million people as of 2013, which is now down to 40 per cent or 82million of the present population of 200million.
“This is as a result of the targeted poverty alleviating initiatives introduced by the Buhari administration since inception, unlike the PDP era measures which centred around the distribution of what is called Keke NAPEP.
“It is also a fact that as at 2014, the then government had begun to borrow locally to pay salaries of Federal staff while no fewer than 27 states were having problems meeting their obligations to civil servants.
“But today, we have a government at the centre which in spite of lower oil prices is on the verge of giving its 4th bailout in six years to States.
“It has also almost cleared the almost 6billion dollar call debt to Nigeria’s JV partners incurred by previous administrations while also regularly meeting the nation’s contractual obligations to the five international oil companies (IOCs)”.
BMO urged Nigerians to judge the President on his records of performance in office rather than listen to empty opposition propaganda