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Ignore Nationwide Protests Over Hardship At Your Peril – Salihu Mohammed Lukman

Former national vice chairman (North West) of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Salihu Mohammed Lukman, has asked President Bola Tinubu to ignore the mass protests over high cost of living at his peril.

In a statement on Wednesday in Abuja, Lukman, a former Director General of the Progressive Governors Forum (PGF), warned that if the issues were not addressed, mass protests would engulf the entire country in no distant time.

He said, “As it is now, the renewed hope agenda of our party has been floated. Like the Naira exchange rate, Renewed Hope is being exchanged for Renewed Anger. The value is becoming more and more provocative to citizens.

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“If the truth must be told, there is hunger in the land! As a committed member of APC, it is very depressing that this is happening under the leadership of our party. Even more depressing was the statement issued by Mr. Felix Morka, our National Publicity Secretary alleging that opposition parties are behind the protests.

“For Mr. Morka to issue such a very dishonest statement points to only one thing that the leadership of our party has completely lost it and at this rate their political utility value is zero. This clearly suggest that even the old pretence about being progressive has been thrown to the dogs.

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“How can we be talking of opposition sponsoring protests in the strongholds of the APC? Both Minna and Kano are strong holds of APC. In the case of Minna, Niger State, APC is the ruling party. Kano is the home state of Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, the APC National Chairman.

“To suggest that any opposition party could mobilise citizens to protests our government is already defeatist. The hard reality is that these protests are logical responses to the realities facing Nigerians.

“If these realities continue unattended to, these protests will spread like bush fire across every part of the country within a very short period. No one should be deceived, these are justifiable protests, which tests the responsiveness of our party, our leaders and above all our democracy. APC and President Asiwaju Tinubu may wish to ignore them at their own peril.”