Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Atiku Abubakar, on Wednesday said President Muhammadu Buhari has racked up an “impressive” list of records since he took over office.
In an article he wrote for Al-Jazeera, which was published on Wednesday, Atiku’s list contained record of unemployment, poverty, out-of-school children, and insecurity.
Excerpts of the article reads: “I have been in politics for some time and I have never hidden my ambition to be president. My motivation is simple: I believe I have the experience and ideas to help Nigeria move in the right direction and achieve its potential.
“Nigeria is a country that has been blessed with rich natural and human resources, although it has often been said oil has been “more of a curse than a help.
“Well, with the changes already being made globally to drastically reduce our carbon energy consumption, it is a curse that will not be with us much longer.
“Given that so much of Nigeria’s economy has been based around oil, the need for strong leadership to reshape our productive sectors is now greater than ever before.
“Unfortunately for Nigeria, this challenge has become significantly more difficult as result of the many failures of the current All Progressives Congress (APC) administration and its leader, President Muhammadu Buhari.
“In my lifetime, Nigeria’s economy has never been in a worse state than it is now and the lives of our peoples’ have never been so destitute and insecure.
“President Buhari has racked up an “impressive” list of records since he took office:
“Record unemployment: The number of unemployed persons in Nigeria increased from over 13 million to over 20 million in the last three years – that is more than the populations of Qatar, Kuwait, UAE, Bahrain, Oman combined,
“Record poverty: According to a report by Brookings Institution, last year, Nigeria overtook India as the country with the largest number of people living in extreme poverty,
“Record number of children out of school: According to UNICEF, the figure is now 13.2 million,
“Record insecurity: More people were killed by Boko Haram fighters and in clashes between herdsmen and farmers than ever before. When President Buhari came into office the insecurity was confined to the northeast of our country, but now it has spread into the northwest and the central belt.
“Fundamental to addressing all these issues is restoring Nigeria’s economic growth. Without a growing economy, firms cannot employ our people. Without jobs, poverty and hunger grow. As poverty and hunger grow, so do the conditions that lead to insecurity.
“We need to break this vicious circle of decline and put pour country on a path of growth and prosperity.”