The National Vice Chairman (North West) of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) Malam Salihu Lukman has counselled President Muhammadu Buhari to respect tbe ruling of the Supreme Court on the naira swap deadline.
He said in doing this, the President will demonstrate he is truly a converted democrat and his democratic credentials further enhanced.
Ruling on a suit brought before it by Kaduna, Kogi and Zamfara States, the Supreme Court on Wednesday restrained the Federal Government and Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) from implementing the February 10 deadline for the validity of the old Naira notes pending the determination of the substantial suit.
Reacting to the development in a statement titled: “Cashless economy and presidential cabal” in Abuja on Thursday, Lukman strongly advised the President to identify with the plight of Nigerians and respect the ruling of the apex court, in line with his administration’s adherence to rule of law.
According to him: “In all of these, it needs to be clearly stated that throughout the tenure of President Muhammadu Buhari, nothing tests his credential as a converted democrat more than the need to demonstrate more listening ears and compassion at the plight of Nigerians.
“As a converted democrat, which I believe he is, President Muhammadu Buhari, needs to demonstrate that by respecting the Supreme Court judgement and direct the CBN to end the current madness that imposes Naira scarcity in the country and untold hardship for millions of Nigerians.”
Expressing concerns about how party leaders are unable to convince the President to have to rethink the implementation of this policy, the National Working Committee (NWC) member of the ruling party wondered how an excellently desirable policy that would lead to a cashless economy was designed to fail to beat the imagination of everyone.
He noted that the policy has created all manner of frustrations both with the APC, across the country and all segments of society.
Lukman however noted: “The only person that possibly is not frustrated with the policy is Alh. Atiku Abubakar, the Presidential candidate of the PDP is supporting the policy, which is why many people argue that the ‘cabal’ around the President wants Alh. Atiku Abubakar to win the election.”
Offering solutions to the logjam and how to forestall future occurrences, the former Director-General of the Progressive Governors’ Forum (PGF) said political parties should develop a system that takes them capable of regulating the conduct of elected functionaries.
According to him: “For both APC, as a party, and Nigeria, as a nation, one of the lessons that the current reality imposes is the need to develop our political parties and make them capable of regulating the conduct of elected functionaries. This is not only the case with APC but also the case with all our parties.
“Why should we have a challenge with grave consequences on the electoral fortunes of political parties, yet none of the parties contesting the 2023 elections have convened an emergency meeting of their National Executive Committee (NEC)? Yet, we want elections to produce accountable leaders. Once party organs have seized to be decision-making platforms, the domineering control of government institutions by so-called cabals will remain strong.
“Moving Nigerian democracy forward requires all of us as Nigerians to be much more honest beyond some partisan permutations about winning elections. As members of APC, we are working hard to win the 2023 elections, but we also will work even harder to ensure that our next government to be led by Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu will come with more listening ears to Nigerians and fellow party leaders.”