Some members of the All Progressives Congress (APC), known as Concerned National Stakeholders, yesterday staged a protest against the alleged hijack of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration by a cabal said to be exerting undue influence over appointments and policies of the government.
The group, numbering over 200, took their protest to the Defence House, Maitama, Abuja, where they urged President Buhari to do away with the cabal and take charge of the reins of government and avoid a situation where he runs the administration by proxy.
Brandishing placards such as: “Drop Abba Kyari” and “Nigerians Voted for Buhari, Not Cabal,” the protesters urged the President to sack his Chief of Staff, Mallam Abba Kyari, whom they accused of being the leader of the cabal.
They argued that for the government to take Nigerians to the Next Level, which is the campaign slogan of the government, President Buhari must be in charge and take full responsibility for the decisions and policies of the present administration.
National convener of the group, Dr. Symeon Chilagorom, who addressed newsmen during the protest, said Nigerians would not accept a repeat of what happened during Buhari’s first term where, according to him, the cabal held sway while those who worked to bring the government in place were abandoned to their fate.
“Our demand is a simple one: the people of this country elected Muhammadu Buhari as their President, not Mamman Daura, Ismaila Funtua, and definitely not Abba Kyari. Only President Buhari has our mandate to govern over the affairs of this nation.
“In light of that, we are simply asking that President Buhari should take back control of his government and begin to walk his talk during the campaign by delivering on the promises made. These promises can only be achieved if the President is on the driver’s seat, not passenger’s seat. He should be surrounded by patriotic men and women of goodwill who assisted him during the campaign in the eyes of the world, travel the nooks and crannies of this country to sell the ideology of the change mantra to the generality of Nigerians and not those who hide away when the going gets tough only to re-emerge when the tough work is done and the battle is won.
“The Nigerian people will not accept the repeat of the first term. As the slogan of the 2019 campaign dictates, this is the Next Level and we dare ask: have we not arrived at the Next Level? If indeed we have arrived at the Next Level, then why is it feeling like we are one step forward and 10 steps backward?
“By now, we expected that a new cabinet independently formed by the President based on merit and other constitutional criteria would have been made public at the very least, not a situation where few members of the cabal are hiding in the shadows trying to handpick their allies and cronies who have neither contributed to the growth of the country nor assisted the party and the presidential campaign in the run up to the 2019 general election,” he said.
Chilagorom said the protest was the first step to inform the President of the need to do away with some persons around him who have become impediments to good governance.
“Today, insecurity permeates a vast area of the northern region majorly caused by poverty and slow pace of governance at all levels. Time for governance is now,” he said.
Head of the Buhari Campaign on Social Media, Ayo Oyalowo, who was part of the protest, decried a situation whereby loyal members of the party who worked for the victory of President Buhari have allegedly been abandoned after the election.