Former Vice President and All Progressives Congress Chieftain, Atiku Abubakar, has accused members of his party in the Senate of betrayal following the “shocking and saddening” decision of the Senate not to grant devolution of power to the states.
In a statement released by his media office in Abuja, Atiku said the decision by the APC-controlled Senate was “a lost opportunity to honour one of the party’s election promises to bring about change by shifting power closer to the people in the remotest regions of our country”.
He said: “This blockage of the Bill by an APC-led Senate majority is a betrayal of our Party’s pre-election promises.
“It was an important vote and I’m shocked by some so-called progressives’ visceral and cynical opposition to restructuring.”
He stated that “instead of building the foundations for a true federation, a small group of so-called progressive senators decided to stick with the new party line, pretending they did not know what restructuring was all about, and that even if they knew, it couldn’t be done.
“I think this is disingenuous,” he said.
“And I think it is a sad day for our Party. But I’m confident the APC will learn the right lesson from this self-inflicted defeat, and remember the mission and mandate given to us by the people.”
Mr. Atiku said he hopes that the lawmakers would “find the courage to stand by what is right, and not by what serves their personal vanities and political interests.
“Let me be clear: Restructuring is no panacea to all our nation’s problems. But devolving resources and responsibilities from an overbearing, unresponsive, and ineffective federal government to the states is the first step we must make if we are serious about putting our nation back on track, and our people back to work,” he said.