The Atiku Advancement Project, a Rivers State-based group has accused President Muhammadu Buhari of running an anti-youth government even when the Nigerian youths have been ranked as the most industrious and enterprising people in the world.
Acting National Coordinator of the group, Barr Soalabo West who faulted the President for referring to Nigerian youths as being lazy noted that history is about repeating itself as the Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar in the 2019 elections intends to harness the potentials of the youths.
According to them, while the President rode atop a wide coalition to become the first opposition candidate to win a general election having tapped into yearnings to end years of corruption, Abubakar was capitalizing on the angst of the elite, potraying himself as the friend of investors and ethnic minorities.
The group averred that the recent reconciliatory move by Abubakar and former President Olusegun Obasanjo which had the presence of influential Muslim and Christian clerics, was a deft move in a country almost evenly split between a predominantly Christian south and a mainly muslim north, racked by sectarian violence.
They insisted that with the previous endorsements by most of the country’s ex-military elite and implicit support of important religious leaders from across faiths, Atiku appears to be having some success at cementing the backing of the political establishment.
Despite strong support in the north, the group recalled that President Buhari had lost in three attempts to be elected president until 2015 when he formed an alliance with key segments of the political elite and defectors from the then ruling PDP.
With many of the PDP defectors now back to the PDP, the pro-Atiku campaign group noted that the President’s popularity has waned in the central region of the country he won in 2015, over widespread perception that he has not done enough to end the grazing conflict that has devastated the area.
They further alleged that investors too have blamed President Buhari for worsening a recession that resulted from an oil-price drop two years before he took office and deterring investment by imposing capital controls.