Deputy National Publicity of the ruling All Progressives Congress(APC), Mr. Yekini Nabena said at the weekend he was not sure if Senator Douyi Diri was prepared to dispense duties as governor of Bayelsa State, saying it appears the governor had no blueprint before contesting for the topmost position.
Nabena, who was on transit from New York, also told our Washington DC correspondent in a telephone interview that it was saddening that politicians would campaign to bring back former President Goodluck Jonathan to contest for the presidency in 2023, when the shortcomings of the administration were apparent to many.
He lamented to our correspondent that one year after being sworn into office, Governor Diri had not made any headway in the provision of infrastructure or in the handling of basic problems emanating from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The APC big-wig who hails from Bayelsa state said as someone that was part of the previous Seriake Dickson administration, he had expected Governor Diri to show deep understanding of how government works especially in laying down his priorities, regretting that his government as it is, appears not to have added value to the people.
“The truth in Africa is that a lot of people are not prepared for a particular position. When I look at him, I don’t think he was prepared to be governor. He was part of the previous government , and you aspire to be a governor, you must have a blueprint, know how much of federal allocation comes to the state, know the amount of internally generated revenue in the state, know how much is owed in terms of pensions and salaries, and you build a plan instead of engaging in trial and error,” Nabena said, emphasizing that the government has failed to make real impact after one year in office.
Asked to point to the direction the Diri government should take to meet the aspirations of the people, Nabena said he regards government as a continuum especially when the present administration cannot be divorced from the past one, and advised the governor not to rush into initiating signature projects, when the Seriake Dickson administration he was part of had left behind many uncompleted projects.
“ He knows that Dickson brought him into office, so let him complete projects that the previous government did. He does not not make sense to award contracts that will be abandoned at the end,” Nabena said, emphasizing that his assessment of the administration is not anchored on party politics.
“Focus on human infrastructure; we need to empower the people, not by sharing money, but by developing human capital; we need to build technical colleges so that our youths can be trained in the required skills because not everybody can make it going to the university,” he added.
Nabena whose altercation with Information Minister, Lai Mohammed over the conduct of APC primaries in Kwara state attracted national attention said it was sad that the Jonathan administration did not implement resource control or restructuring which the people are not clamouring for the current government to do.
He regretted that the Jonathan administration could not take a Final Investment Decision(FID) on the $3 billion Brass Fertilizer project and Brass LNG, all in Bayelsa which he said the Buhari administration had been able to finalize.
“ Jonathan diverted the money for the Brass LNG project which the International Oil Corporations(IOCs) operating in the country had contributed. You know throughout that time we refused to criticize him as an opposition party in Bayelsa, APC did not fight him but we knew he did not work for the interest of the state,” he concluded.
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