The African Democratic Congress (ADC) on Wednesday urged opposition parties leaders to back President Muhammadu Buhari’s efforts to contain the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The party noted that the world was at a “critical point” in its history, adding that the opposition needed to play “reasonable politics”.
In a statement by its National Publicity Secretary Yemi Kolapo, the ADC said there are “far more important things to ponder on than playing on the already stretched sentiments of Nigerians to win some form of cheap solidarity.
“The Peoples Democratic Party has pilot states that they can work on to show Nigerians how they would address the problem if they were to be at the centre at this point in time.
“Let their governors lead the way. There is enough pain, hunger, fear in the land, right now. We must play responsible politics and leave unproductive altercations for another day.”
According to it, Nigeria had taken “bold and calculated steps” which had kept the casualty figures relatively low.
The statement noted, however, that more needed to be done.
Those in charge of the COVID-19 palliative strategy, it added, needed to boost research “on how best to go as they were clearly doing more harm than good in that regard.”
The party commended the President’s first and second speeches on the pandemic, describing both as “well put together”.
According to it, the speeches “addressed the major areas that should be addressed if sound minds were to reason objectively,” adding that the opposition should “play responsible politics in these trying times.”
The government, it reasoned, had formed good COVID-19 policies, but implementation, sincerity and ultimate beneficiaries had been contentious.
It the opposition to “chase government for sincere and thorough implementation, and ensure they don’t play politics with the lives of citizens.
“Everyone knows the unfortunate limitations of the current government in terms of driving the economy. But what we have in our hands now, regardless of what some may think, is not a joke.
“Oppositions, the world over, are building bridges to save lives first, and leaving normal political tussles for normal days.
“When we argue, we must do so constructively, and ask: if we were confronted with a situation that had never happened before, with no certain solution, where a little error could cause the death of thousands of our dear people, how exactly would we handle it?”
The party advised Nigerians to let the government know where it is failing, “and this is clearly in the area of communication as regards palliatives and their distribution.”
ADC added: “There must be an algebra of distribution that sits well with every part of the country, and with the truly vulnerable in Nigeria.”
It encouraged Nigerians to demand accountability of the European Union’s €50 million COVID-19 grant for Nigeria.”