The Speaker of Nigeria’s House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, on Wednesday denied attacking his political party, the All Progressives Congress, APC and other political parties.
In a rejoinder signed by his special adviser on Media and Public affairs, Turaki Hassan, the speaker said he never mentioned any political party while delivering a recent speech.
“Our attention had been drawn to stories published in some news organisations in which it was reported that Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Yakubu Dogara, attacked the All Progressives Congress and the People’s Democratic Party.
“Contrary to the reports, the Speaker never mentioned any political party in his remarks delivered on Monday at a retreat organised by the National Institute for Strategic Studies (NIPSS), in Abuja.”
Mr. Dogara was reported to have said Nigerian political parties are ”weak, unstable, lacking functional party apparatus, and also suffering from low organisational capacity and internal democracy.”
This was contained in a keynote adress delivered on his behalf by the minority Whip of the House, Yakubu Barde at a retreat organised by the NIPSS.
He was quoted as saying that it is a political malpractice for an elected government to govern without reference to the manifesto that was placed before the voters which essentially formed the basis of their election.
He said political parties in Africa, and Nigeria in particular, ”were weak, lacking not only stable and functioning party apparatus, but also clear programmatic appeal.”
“They also suffer from low organisational capacity and lack of internal democracy. Such weak political parties cannot support democracy, as parties are expected to serve many important functions, including citizen mobilisation, interest aggregation, public policy formulation, leadership recruitment and government organisation,” he said.