by Salihu Yakasai
This is indeed, a new party for a new Nigeria. Let us all come together, and give our input in shaping the future of this great Nation. It is doable, it is possible, and I certainly believe we can do it. Don’t just sit and be an arm chair critic. Be pro active, engage APC and challenge us on how we intend to implement these policies.
Last Thursday, 7th March 2014, the All Progressives Congress Party, APC unveiled its manifesto at the congress hall of Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja. It was indeed a historic moment in this democratic dispensation for its an event like no other one that we’ve ever witnessed since the return of democracy in 1999 to date. The party leaders were present, from Chief Bisi Akande, to General Muhammadu Buhari, Bola Tinubu, Atiku. All the APC Governors were also present, along with some of the party’s members of National Assembly. Above all, ordinary party members from the 36 states and Abuja came in from all over the country to witness this historic event.
Apart from the usual speeches that we heard from different speakers at the event. The unveiling of the manifesto is indeed a historic event, it is a detailed, well articulated document with specifics on how to tackle some of the biggest issues bedeviling our Nation: Issues like, Job creation, Fighting corruption, free Education, Agriculture, housing, Health care plan, Social welfare, infrastructure, Power, Natural resources and Security. If we look at the 1st one, Job creation, APC intends to create 20,000 jobs in each state for those with a minimum qualification of secondary school certificate. Embarking on vocational training and skills acquisition nationwide for unemployed graduates, school leavers and dropouts. On Education, APC intends to provide Free, relevant and quality Primary and Secondary education in the country. Creation of incentives and dedicating special attention to girl education. On Agriculture, we intend to provide a guaranteed market for agricultural produce, and also value added services among many others.
These are some of the specifics in the manifesto which APC is offering Nigerians. I’ll advice everyone to read it, for these are realistic goals which the party has set for itself, and I strongly believe they are attainable. Doubt APC at your own peril, for we have set so many unprecedented milestones in this country. We are the 1st truly nationalistic opposition party, we had majority in the House of Representatives which has never happened in the history of Nigeria, and we are on the verge of making history, as the 1st party to defeat an incumbent in this country.
Another key moment during the unveiling of this manifesto, was Madame Oby Ezekwesili’s speech at the event. She isn’t a member of the APC but was invited to address the gathering, so that we can atleast hear an independent view, which we did. Madame did not spare us at all, she dished out her mind and her reservations right in front of all our party leaders. I have never seen our leaders in this country being talked to, and addressed (respectfully) like she did. I also suggest, you get the transcript of that speech, and have a sense of what she had to tell the APC leadership.
This is indeed, a new party for a new Nigeria. Let us all come together, and give our input in shaping the future of this great Nation. It is doable, it is possible, and I certainly believe we can do it. Don’t just sit and be an arm chair critic. Be pro active, engage APC and challenge us on how we intend to implement these policies. I urge every Nigerian to go through this document and read it. Believe me, if you can provide a better alternative to any of the solutions being proffered by APC, I am sure, it will be taking into consideration. Our manifesto is NOT a Holy book, its a work in progress which can be reviewed and adjusted to suit the current realities on ground, as such any additional input can be and will be considered. Let’s work together, in ensuring a better country for us all, and those that will come after us.
Tanko Yakasai is a proud husband and father of two. He is a broadcaster with Freedom Radio, Kano. Yakasai believes in the unity and development of Nigeria, which paved his way into community activities through NGOs in transforming our society for the better. He is a registered member of the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC).
Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija.