SAN FRANCISCO, February 24, (THEWILL) – The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Ministers Forum has expressed optimism that although the party is presently down in view of its defeat in the 2015 general elections, it would still bounce back to reclaim its place of pride in the nation’s political landscape.
This was disclosed on Tuesday by the Forum’s Chairman and a former Minister for Special Duties, Kabiru Tanimu Turaki while delivering his remark at the opening session of the Forum’s maiden meeting in Abuja. The meeting, which started at about 12 pm, was attended by PDP ministers who served from 1999 till 2015.
He stressed that despite deliberate attempt to change the narrative on the tremendous achievements of the PDP government in the last 16 years, members of the forum are determined to defend and protect the achievements of the PDP government.
Turaki explained that the meeting was called to discuss the emergence of Senator Ali-Modu Sheriff as the chairman of the party, arguing that as critical stakeholders, they cannot sit by and watch the party being destroyed.
According to him, “People had predicted that Nigeria will disintegrate in 2015 but the PDP kept Nigeria together. If we can save Nigeria, we can save our party if we save PDP, we are saving democracy in Nigeria.
“Some insinuations have been made that we are not a recognized organ of the constitution of the party. But we have our rights as members of the national caucus. We are stakeholders. We are leaders in our various states and we have more than a passing interest in our party. We may be down today because we lost elections but we are not out. We are coming back and this is the beginning of our coming back.”
While enumerating the achievements of the PDP in the last sixteen years, the Chairman claimed that the party left indelible imprints in all the sectors of the nation’s economy and the achievements are there for all unbiased critics to see.
His words, “When we came in 1999, we inherited a wobbling economy. We made it not only the fastest growing economy in the world but we were the third destination for foreign direct investment in Africa. We strengthened the banking sector. The faith of Nigerians in the Diaspora was restored in the country and they came back to invest in the country. We sustained an exchange rate regime that was stable between N94 to N115 to a Dollar. We moved agriculture from subsistence level to business. We respected court orders. We were able to build and sustain existing infrastructure. New airports were built.
“In the health sector, we ensured that each state of the federation had a teaching hospital or a federal medical Centre. We eradicated polio. We wrestled Ebola to the ground. We are not fighting for space with anybody. We will defend our legacy so that the narrative is not changed. The successes of PDP was because we believed power belong to the people and we must be with the people. That is why Nigerians trusted us to 16 years,” Turaki stated.