The All Progressives Congress Presidential Campaign Council (APC PCC) has told Atiku Abubakar, the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the just concluded election, that hitting the streets won’t make the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) change its mind about the winner of the presidential election.
The campaign also advised Atiku against allowing his campaign spokesman, Dino Melaye, to push him around.
The reaction stems from the demonstration by the PDP at the commission headquarters in Abuja on Monday.
Atiku had led the leadership of the PDP and many of the party followers on a peaceful protest from the Party’s national secretariat to INEC Headquarters in Abuja.
However, Bayo Onanuga, the PCC Director of Media and Publicity, in a statement titled ‘Atiku Abubakar and his band of jesters at INEC headquarters’ revealed that the ruling party was surprised to discover that rather than keep to his promise of seeking legal redress, the former vice president allowed himself to be teleguided by his political foot soldiers including Melaye.
The statement read, “When the defeated Peoples Democratic Party Presidential Candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar told the whole world last week that he would seek redress in court over the outcome of the 25 February Presidential election, little did we know that he did not plan to be guided by his own promise.
“Going by his political antecedents, it was rather not surprising that Atiku, days later, led a band of protesters, nay jesters in Abuja, to the Headquarters of Independent National Electoral Commission. What was on display today by Alhaji Atiku and his motley crowd was a new low from the perennial election loser.
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“With Atiku staging a theatre of the absurd, we fail to see how a march to INEC by a scanty crowd will provide any victory window for him and his fragmented PDP. The only recourse open to Atiku after the electoral umpire declared Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, the President-elect, is the Election Petition Tribunal.
“Instead of Atiku and his party to wisely spend their time to gather the so-called evidence they hope to present before the courts, they are busy dancing ‘skelewu’ on the streets and causing traffic nuisance to residents of the Federal Capital Territory who were going to work on a Monday morning.”
Advising Atiku to respect his age and the high office of the Vice Presidency of Nigeria he once occupied, Onanuga reiterated that he should stop being teleguided by Melaye, who earlier alleged that N400 billion was wasted on the election that Atiku was destined to lose.
The spokesman admonished that the PDP presidential candidate should avoid being ‘misdirected by court jesters in his Party’, who continued to campaign after the election.
“They are mere comic characters in a travelling theatre group. INEC Headquarters is not a court where the prayers of Alhaji Atiku can be answered. No amount of theatrical display will give him succour. The honourable and lawful path to take is for Atiku to get his lawyers to plead his case in court. He should stop throwing tantrums like a baby whose candy was taken away over an election he clearly lost due to his own poor judgement; mismanagement of his own party and violation of power rotational arrangement between the North and the South.
“The PDP presidential candidate dug his own grave in his last election and, absurdly, he is trying to rewrite the script of his own utter failure. We wonder how Atiku and his party hoped to win, when he himself admitted that Peter Obi, his running mate in 2019, ran away with traditional PDP votes from the South-East and South-South.
“It is preposterous that while Atiku is disturbing public peace, chanting phantom electoral victory, Peter Obi is making same claim. We think both men have embarrassed themselves enough and it is time they both resolved who between them is the supposed winner that will challenge our party’s victory in court
“Finally, we advise Atiku to retire honourably from politics and move to his abode in Dubai. At 77 in November, Atiku does not have age on his side again. He has participated in his last election and hopefully, he has learnt worthy lessons, never to place his selfish interest above party and established principles in his party and the polity,” he stated.