- …Ruling party blackmailing Muslims-Opposition alleges
- …No, you launched 7 cardinal sins against Nigeria, ruling party replies
By Lawrence Olaoye, Abuja & Ayodele Samuel, Lagos
The ruling party, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the mega opposition party in the country, All Progressives Congress (APC) yesterday traded words over the recent road map unveiled by the latter.
While the APC denounced the PDP for describing its roadmap as a product of ‘Janjaweed Ideology’ and regard such as a veiled religious blackmail, the PDP said it stands by its claim even as it went further to allege that the opposition, by its roadmap, had launched seven cardinal sins against Nigerians.
The APC in a statement by its Interim National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, alleged that PDP was fond of pigeon-holing it as an Islamic party and thus showed that it has phobia against the Muslims in the country.
The opposition party said: “On a more dangerous level, it shows that the PDP will not relent from engaging in Islamophobia by using the Boko Haram crisis in a part of the country to stereotype Muslims and paint them as terrorists, even when it is obvious that majority of Muslims do not support the heinous crimes being perpetrated by the sect.
“The party wondered why the PDP, in reacting to the APC’s Road Map, would be making an allusion to the despicable Janjaweed militia which is wreaking havoc in Sudan’s Western Darfur region, saying this is nothing short of religious escapism and a dangerous attempt to whip-up religious sentiments against people of a certain faith.
“The only reason that the PDP used the word ‘Janjaweed’ is because the militia that goes by that name comprises mostly, if not exclusively, of people of Arab/Muslim stock in Sudan.
“This has further confirmed our fears that there is a clear attempt by the PDP, led by President Goodluck Jonathan, to divide Nigerians along religious lines as never before in the history of our country and to use religions as a political tool – a very dangerous move that can only result in religious warfare, from which no country that engages in it has ever survived intact’’, APC said.
The party said while it had been restrained all along by not responding in kind to PDP’s blackmail, it is not unaware of the dictum that a lie repeated often enough becomes the truth.
But, the PDP in its response to the opposition outrage said it stood by its ‘Janjaweed Ideology’ accusation adding that the APC had even launched seven cardinal sins against Nigerians.
These sins, according to the ruling party include “deceit and propaganda; violence and destruction; lust for power; greed for money and insatiable acquisition of wealth; multiple and over-taxation; promotion of religious /tribal divisions and lack of democratic tenets and principles.”
The party, in a statement signed by its National Publicity Secretary, Chief Olisa Metuh, yesterday, said it stood by its allegation that the APC is pursuing a Janjaweed ideology and that the road-map unveiled by the opposition party was a ‘roadmap to perdition’.
The ruling party insisted that it will be out of place for any body to associate APC with Islam or any other religion for that matter adding that no religion encourages the promotion of violence, greed, destruction and lust for power which are the trademarks of the APC.
The PDP noted that in working tirelessly to ensure that they make the country ungovernable for President Goodluck Jonathan, the APC has shown that they do not believe the truth in the Koran that power belongs only to Allah and that, in His infinite grace and wisdom, He gives power to anybody he chooses.
On the roadmap unveiled by the APC, the PDP insisted that it is not worth discussing as it was evidently rushed out without proper homework. The ruling party described the document as wishy-washy, lacking in depth and character and failed to address any issue.
The PDP added that it is most curious that the APC with 16 states under its control have not been able to implement any of its Janjaweed ideology as state governments are constitutionally empowered to attempt implementation of almost all the 7 cardinal programmes launched by APC.