Saturday, February 13, 2016

The budget is the beginning of APC failure- Nwosu


THE National Chairman of the Africa Democratic Congress (ADC), Chief Ralphs Okey Nwosu, said he was not surprised that the ‘Budget of Change’ is fast becoming ‘Budget of Embarrassment.’

He said, except the administration starts to heed to the voices of reason and take a more studied and contemporary approach to this change thing, the country is in for a big trouble.
Nwosu said: “The administration’s the new-Sherriff-in-town shenanigan and loquaciousness is creating a huge gap within the polity. Driving change without deliberate effort to engage stakeholders, driving change by creating schism and fear is almost an impossible task. We need cohesion.
Unfortunately, the government no longer values the peace committee that helped navigate the smooth transition. We certainly need them as an apolitical body to continue to broaden peace and consensus-building within the horizon to help any government, as we still struggle with the challenges of nation building in a democracy.
“It is either eminent men and women with sound mind and conscience help the administration to drive for enabling atmosphere or charlatans and sophisticated intellectual machineries and rascals will run riot in the system.”
Foreseeing danger in the budget fiasco, Nwosu stated that dealing with issues in piecemeal and being distracted by the issues of the moment merely stop all of us from exploring the bigger picture.
“Yes, this year’s budget has been subjected to all forms of bizarre games, overt and covert manipulations to serve persons and some cults.
“At a point, it was reported that the budget was missing, so it was lost and was found. It has also been said to have been miscalculated, and then was adjusted. Then rumours of smuggling fresh items, and finally the mafia within the establishment got the damn thing padded. This much is in the public space.
“But you can wonder what the ministers of Finance, as well as and Budget and Planning are struggling with. The reality is that when it comes to culture of impunity, what is readily visible to the naked eyes is barely 25 per cent of the full spectrum; it is only a tip of the iceberg, the humongous mass is usually buried in the deep sea.
“Still, mudslinging is not the answer. The problem is deeper; EFCC is not the solution. Effective leadership is key. Therefore, we have to focus on building an ecosystem that encourages patriotism, inclusiveness, and sense of justice.”
The party chief said nobody has the monopoly of all things. Nation building, like modern leadership, is not one-man show.
“Since the APC change program kicked off on May 29, 2015, the EFCC has been smeared and the case of the recovered funds from Bank executives still hangs, the Code of Conduct Tribunal CCT Chairman still has big issues against his person and office.
“The Single Treasury Account TSA has been associated with fraud from inception, and most recently another 4.5billion Naira racket was uncovered. The story now is that EFCC, CCT, forex department of CBN, and TSA have become privileged postings that many operatives, civil servants, and people with political godfathers are flooding to the place. I know we all know why.
“In essence there is something in the change leadership paradigm of the present administration that just doesn’t seem right. We cannot build in division; no nation can. Demonizing some, while a few others play holier-than-thou godfathers, posturing with a pompous swagger will only expand the gulf.
“Make no mistake, elite hypocrisy is doing the country harm beyond repair. It is not about APC, PDP, or ADC, which I lead; without exception all of us have been part of the complicity in the culture that runs across all our systems, and our country.
“We can send EFCC to go and investigate the yet-to-be-passed-budget, or we can send men of the DSS, it boils down to how has our culture shaped us to use positions of power.”
He went on: “I have deliberately used your prompting questions to redirect us to focus on the bigger challenge. How do we build the harmony needed to focus on Nigeria without oil? How do we get our over 170 million citizens on the trajectory of driving a national vision that puts our nation on the path of greatness?
“How do we get decent investor to recognize that Nigeria means business? We need debates, sound national conversations to point all our citizens to a new Nigeria.
“The taxation regime chorus one gets from some few administration official is one sided; who do you tax, businesses are collapsing fast; many of our existing businesses are truly doing social services, and if the system taxes them any more, their ill-health will manifest in all Nigerian streets and homes.
“There is poverty, exchange rate is high because foreign currencies are in high demand, we do not export and do not produce our needs either. So it is important that we do not dwell too much on the fog in the atmosphere, rather we need to x-ray the climate as a whole to make better sense.
“I strongly will appeal to our various media to help shift the discourse from the gutter, and fowled to more enamoring, and inspiring platform.”

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