The camp of former President, Goodluck Jonathan has attacked Babatunde Fashola, the Minister of Power, Works and Housing over a statement apparently made by him.
Fashola had during a Town Hall meeting, in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, alleged that Jonathan accepted defeat to President Muhammadu Buhari, because recession was imminent.
In a swift response however, Jonathan’s former Spokesman, Reno Omokri, in a statement on Saturday, debunked the allegation.
He wrote: “I am surprised that rather than help his principal, Muhammadu Buhari, look for his invisible school certificate, that has allegedly been ‘kidnapped’ by the Military, Tunde Raji Fashola, the Minister of Darkness, persists in slandering Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, by saying that he only conceded the 2015 elections, due to the impending recession.
“Nothing can be further than the truth, and Fashola, as a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, ought to know that. First of all, there was no ‘impending recession’ at any time when Dr. Jonathan was President of Nigeria.
“What was on the horizon, was economic boom, as evidenced by CNNMoney, which projected Nigeria as the third fastest growing economy in the world, in 2015.
“It did not end there. Under the Jonathan administration, Nigeria was a magnet for investment, and was the number one destination for Foreign Direct Investment in Africa, as rated by the Geneva-based United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). Today, Nigeria is not even included in the top 10 in Africa.
“Former President Jonathan, handed over a robust economy to President Buhari, on May 29, 2015, with a single digit inflation rate (it is now double digit), a Transparency International Corruption Perception Index ranking of 136 (it is now 148, the worst in Nigeria’s history), a Petrol Pump Price of ₦87 (it is now ₦145), and a Naira valued at ₦199 to $1 (it is now ₦365 to $1).
“In fact, the economic situation under President Jonathan was much better than it is today, that Gallup polls rated Nigeria under Jonathan as the “happiest nation on earth”. In contrast, today, the World Economic Forum rates Nigeria as the world headquarters for extreme poverty!
“The fact, which Mr. Fashola knows very well, is that Nigeria’s first recession in 25 years, occurred under President Buhari, because he took six months before appointing his cabinet. And even when he appointed his cabinet, he appointed inept certificate forgers to handle a sensitive Ministry like the Finance Ministry, which had hitherto been professionally handled by the world renowned Dr. Mrs. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala.
“Furthermore, the utterances by Mr. Fashola’s principal, whenever he left the country, served to demarket the economy and trigger capital flight. If President Buhari was not telling the world that all Nigerians were corrupt, except him, he was telling them that Nigerian youths are lazy.
“Statements like that triggered the loss of confidence in the Nigerian economy under Buhari, and indirectly led to the recession.
I will like to also remind Mr. Fashola that on July 12, 2014, he said “the only way you and I will have electricity in this country is to vote out the PDP”. Mr. Fashola is fond of denying his own statements, and we will like to remind him that he cannot deny this one, because it was caught on tape.
“Incidentally, the Peoples Democratic Party is no longer in office at the Federal Government, and Mr. Fashola has been Minister of Power for over three years, yet the power situation has not improved.
“Rather than bury his head in shame, Raji Fashola continues to dance naked in the market, and blame Dr. Jonathan for what he and his bad gang caused.”