PDP Questions COP28 Delegation
The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) has cast a critical eye on President Bola Tinubu’s purportedly inflated delegation of 1,411 individuals to the Conference of the Parties (COP28) in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The party raises pertinent questions about the composition, relevance, and the financial burden incurred by such a substantial entourage.
Alleged Composition Issues
The National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, in a statement issued in Abuja on Sunday, expressed concerns about the reported composition of the delegation. The PDP contends that the delegation is not only bloated but also allegedly filled with cronies, political minions, and individuals with no substantive connection to the conference, all at considerable expense to the nation.
Wasteful Expenditure Accusation
The PDP doesn’t mince words in its assessment, asserting that this incident further validates its belief that the Tinubu-led APC administration tends towards wasteful, frivolous, and reckless use of the nation’s scarce resources. At a time when Nigerians are clamoring for prudent resource management to address infrastructural needs, job creation, and economic revival, the PDP portrays this delegation as a stark contrast to those aspirations.
Presidential Justification and PDP’s Rebuttal
The statement from the Presidency attempting to rationalize the delegation as including genuine sub-national officials, businesses, journalists, and civil society representatives traveling at their own expense is met with skepticism by the PDP. The party contends that these claims serve as a veil to conceal the inclusion of cronies, mistresses, and hangers-on associated with the Presidency who allegedly attend at the government’s expense without contributing substantively to the conference.
Profligacy and Corruption Allegations
The PDP goes further to condemn what it perceives as profligacy in the APC administration’s actions and policies, asserting that they are inclined towards promoting and institutionalizing corruption. The party emphasizes that the attempt to deceive Nigerians regarding the delegation’s composition, despite the list being publicly available, underscores what it deems an irredeemably depraved state of affairs.
Demands for Transparency and Accountability
In response to these allegations and concerns, the PDP puts forth a series of demands. It challenges the Presidency to disclose the names of the official delegation sponsored by the Federal Government, provide clarity on the relevance of each individual to the conference, and unveil the total cost of the sponsorship on the nation. The PDP contends that Nigerians are aware of the genuine officials and self-sponsored entities at the conference, making transparency imperative.
Call for National Assembly Intervention
The PDP invokes the constitutional duty of the National Assembly, urging it to utilize its powers under Section 88 of the Constitution to investigate and expose corruption within any organ of the government. The party calls for an immediate inquiry into the allegations and insists on imposing appropriate sanctions if any individual or institution is found culpable.
A Demand for Accountability
In a final and resolute demand, the PDP calls on President Tinubu to refund any Federal Government funds allegedly improperly spent on individuals with no relevance to the conference. The party suggests redirecting such funds towards projects directly benefiting the well-being of Nigerians, reinforcing its commitment to fiscal responsibility and accountability.