The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, has announced his intention to mount a legal challenge against the conduct of the 2023 general elections, which he described as a rape on democracy.

Addressing a world press conference in Abuja on Thursday, he indicated that he would appeal to God if he is unable to obtain favorable judgment with the Judiciary.

He also accused the presidential candidate of the Labour Party (PDP), Peter Obi, of running away from the PDP because he was scared of state governors who were insisting on producing, from within their ranks, the presidential candidate and the running mate of the main opposition party.

The former vice president said while Obi was scared away, he decided to fight the PDP governors who he said he was unable to defeat at the national convention.

Atiku who noted that the processes was grossly flawed in every way, added that “it must be challenged”.

“I believe that this is not the legacy President Muhammadu Buhari intends to bequeath to the nation. It is about the future of every Nigerian, including the youth,” he said.

Atiku while assuring that he will commit the rest of his life to the battle to establish democracy in Nigeria said it is his hope that the judiciary will redeem itself.

Responding to the question on pressures from the All Progressive Congress (APC) and a visit by some governors to mount pressure on him to drop the court option, Atiku denied knowledge of the visit.

“I was at home all through today. I am not aware if any governor came,” he said.

Speaking on the performance of Peter Obi, the Labour Party (LP) Presidential candidate, Atiku stated that he left the PDP in a hurry.

Atiku, while responding to question on whether he regrets not working with LP, considering its performance in the election, he said: ”First and foremost about Labour Party, by the time Peter decided to leave PDP, and join Labour party, we have not really began our primary process. So the question on whether he was going to get ticket or not does not arise. Yes, it is a fact, he took our votes from the South East and South South.

“But that of course will not make him president. We all know that to be president in this country, you need to get votes from everywhere,” he said.

Atiku however stated that Peter Obi is welcomed to dialogue with PDP.

“We are ready to dialogue with him, so I don’t think we will have any problem with him, if he wants to dialogue with PDP to form an alliance,” he said.

“I think Peter was in a rush. When campaign started, our PDP governors sat down and said they must produce the president amongst them, they must produce the vice president amongst them, they must produce the Chief of Staff among them.

“Peter got scared and he left. I’ did not get scared. I stood up against the governors. When we formed this PDP some of them perhaps were in the secondary school or university, so why should I be afraid. So I stood up and fought them.

Read also: Police officer shoots ‘mistress’ to death in Ilorin, kills self

“So if he was there, nothing could have stopped him from becoming a running mate. Because I have a right of choosing whosoever I wanted as my running mate.

“The question of whether I will work with Peter or not or whether Peter wounded the PDP, I will say yes, because all the votes he carried were PDP votes in the South East. That is politics anyway.

“I know that Nigerians, especially the youth, are traumatized by the developments, but I want to urge them to conduct themselves peacefully. Like I have done over the years, I assure you that I will commit the rest of my life in ensuring that true democracy, which affirms the supremacy of your votes and your will, will take firm footing and guarantee a stable, prosperous and peaceful Nigeria.

“This is more so as Nigeria represents the hope of Africa and the Black World.

“It is my hope that the judiciary will redeem itself this time around and rise to the society’s expectation as the last hope.

“In the end, who wins is not as important as the credibility of our elections and electoral processes.

“It was also for this reason that I sacrificed my political aspiration and fought against the actualisation of Third Term. Whether during the military or civilian era, I have, no matter how inconvenient, pitched my tent with the people against dictators. During the military regime, it nearly cost me my life and the near decimation of my businesses. In the civilian administration, it had serious adverse implications on my political life. But I have remained undaunted because I was, and am still convinced, that the only reason why I am in politics is to work in tandem with other compatriots in the advancement of the wellbeing of the people.

“The 2023 presidential election presented our nation and its people the greatest opportunity for a reset. We had everything going for us: a legal framework in the 2022 Electoral Act and the BVAS technology. The enthusiasm of Nigerians to turn out and in large numbers was an added bonus.

“However, the dreams and aspirations of Nigerians who braced all the challenges to go and cast their votes on Saturday, February 25, 2023, were shattered by the conduct of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), which failed to live up to expectations. The weekend election was neither free nor fair. Preliminary assessments indicate that it is the worst conducted elections since the return to democratic rule.

“The manipulation and fraud that attended this election was unprecedented in the history of our nation. I can still not understand why the electoral umpire was in such a hurry to conclude collation and announcement of the result, given the number of complaints of irregularities of bypassing of the BVAS, failure of uploading to the IREV, and unprecedented cancellations and disenfranchisement of millions of voters in breach of the Electoral Act and the commission’s own guidelines. It was indeed a rape of democracy.

“Having consulted with leaders of our party and Nigerians from different walks of life, I have come to the conclusion that the processes and outcome of the Presidential and National Assembly election of last Saturday was grossly flawed in every material particular, and as such must be challenged. This has been attested to by both local and international observers. I want to believe that this was not the legacy that President Muhammadu Buhari had promised. For President Buhari, it is not too late to make amends for the good of our country and the future generations and indeed to assure his legacy.

“This battle to right the wrongs of Saturday is not about me. It is a continuation of my battles to deepen democracy and for a better life for our people. It is about the future of Nigerian youths.”


To Get The Latest News Update

Sign up to Our Subscription.

We don’t spam! Read our privacy policy for more info.

To Get The Latest News Update

Sign up to Our Subscription.

We don’t spam! Read our privacy policy for more info.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *