The All Progressives Congress has set up a mechanism to enable it properly monitor and assess the execution of the party’s manifesto as well as other promises made by President Muhammadu Buhari during the campaigns.
The assessment team which will also serve as an advisory committee to the national chairman of the party, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun is to comprise mainly of technocrats, This Day reports.
President Buhari had on the platform of APC promised among others to tackle the vicious circle of unemployment, insecurity, corruption and the welfare of the people, especially payment of allowances to the unemployed and the aged.
In the APC manifesto, the party pledged to directly address the deficits arising from the failings of the past governments.
To this end, since the president took over power at the federal level, the APC-led administration has come under unfavourable judgement by the opposition parties.
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The former party in government and major opposition, the Peoples Democratic Party on its part utterly demanded the fulfillment of campaign promises by the APC and the president.
But the national publicity secretary of the APC, Alhaji Lai Muhammed was quick to say that the setting up of the assessment team was to ensure that the government meets regularly with these critical sectors and that there was a two-way communication between the government and these sectors.
He said: “My party has also set up a mechanism for assessing, continuously, government’s performance and tracking whether or not the government is meeting its electoral promises. An Advisory team to the Chairman of the party, made up of technocrats, will track how the government is faring and also make suggestions to the chairman in this regard.”
Mohammed who revealed the move by the party in a paper presented at the ongoing 55th annual general conference of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) in Abuja, said that sustaining the gains of the last general election have been made easy by the realisation that Nigerians now have the opportunity to elect a leader of their choice without any hindrance.
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The APC spokesman said political parties must ensure that there was no disconnect between them and the people, adding that there must also be constant interaction between the government and the people.
Mohammed added that the APC has organised an induction course for its members in the National Assembly so that they as representatives of the people can have symbiotic relations with their party and the executive arm of government. He stressed that notwithstanding the existence of separation of power, the relationship between the legislature and the executive should not be adversarial but complementary.
He said that the constant rapport between lawmakers and their party will ensure that they key into the party’s agenda, adding that the party has given every one of its members in the national assembly a copy of their manifesto to enable them see what laws need to be passed to ensure the implementation of the promises.
“Then there is the national conference for the party as well as its members in the legislature and in the executive to deliberate on how far the party is meeting its electoral promises,” he stated.
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Mohammed said: “It is also important that, through the instrumentality of the party, the government continues to engage the critical sectors - youths, NGOs, Women, people living with disability, the organized private sector, organised labour and other groups.”
He assessed the conduct of the last election and described it as generally successful in terms of its organisation and the fact that the results were largely acceptable to most Nigerians.
The scribe attributed the success of the polls to the use of technology, especially the card reader and the biometric voter’s card but accused the PDP of over spending in the area of funding of its election campaign. He said the PDP outgunned the APC on many flanks during the electioneering campaign.
The spokesman said: “The then ruling party outspent the opposition in the area of advertisements, whether in the print or electronic media. According to a report credited to Compliance and Content Monitoring Limited, out of the N3.23 billion that was spent on political campaign advertisement during the last electioneering campaign, the PDP spent N2.5 billion of the total, compared to N728 million by the APC.”
Meanwhile, following the tagging of Buhari as being slow in his style of government even as he has not announced his cabinet members, Oyegun dismissed the insinuation saying that the president is taking deliberate steps to make Nigeria a better country.