Atiku Abubakar has slammed the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) over the conduct of the Presidential and National Assembly elections, saying the umpire’s inability to upload results on the INEC Result Viewing Portal (IReV) is a rape of democracy. The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) made the claim in Abuja on Thursday, two days after INEC declared Bola Tinubu of the All Progressive Congress (APC) as the winner of Saturday’s election.
“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 were unprecedented in the history of our nation,” the former vice president said. “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.”
During the press conference in Abuja on Thursday, March 2, 2023, he vowed to challenge the outcome of the election and believes the judiciary will do justice to the matter. According to his words; “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 were grossly flawed in every material particular, and as such must be challenged. This has been attested to by both local and international observers,” he said.
“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 future generations and indeed to assure his legacy.”
Atiku had on Thursday claimed the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate Bola Tinubu’s declaration as the winner of Saturday’s presidential election was flawed and vowed to challenge it in court. Minutes after the comment, the Tinubu campaign team faulted the claim but expressed readiness to take on Atiku in court.
“Atiku Abubakar’s decision to challenge the outcome of the results is welcome. We are prepared to meet his challenge, no matter the nature of the challenge, anywhere and anytime,” the Director of Public Affairs and Chief Spokesperson Festus Keyamo said in a statement.
“If Atiku Abubakar is not embracing the olive branch extended to him and other losers in the 2023 elections by the President-elect, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the least he can do is to quietly relocate to Dubai which has become his traditional home base.”
Read The Full Statement Below
Immediate Response By The Tinubu/ Shettima Presidential Campaign Council To The Press Conference By Alhaji Atiku Abubakar. Atiku Abubakar Should Quit Being Delusional. He Destroyed His Party And Reaped The Full Consequence Of His Indiscretion
In the typical fashion of the last kick of a dying horse, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar this evening addressed the Press and claimed that the 2023 Presidential Election was neither free nor fair. He made this bogus claim without providing a shred of evidence, except to trumpet the noise made by his supporters on social media. He also went ahead to make unfounded derogatory comments about the person of the President-elect, Bola Ahmed Tinubu in obvious bitterness and frustration.
Alhaji Atiku Abubakar should be thankful that he even exceeded expectations in the elections by coming 2nd; with all the distractions and fractured party with which he campaigned he must have sensed beforehand that he was headed for a humiliating defeat that should have put him a distant 3rd or 4th in the elections. His performance was therefore the best he could achieve.
Firstly, Atiku Abubakar breached the zoning principle within his own party by insisting on running for President when that was clearly against the mood of the nation; even after emerging as a candidate, the PDP itself continued to rub insult on the faces of southern leaders in the Party by insisting on keeping the position of National Chairman in the North. This obviously led to the rebellion of the G5 Governors and their subsequent sabotage of the PDP before the polls and at the polls by campaigning against Atiku’s candidature. His failure to unite his party and manage this post-primaries fall-out was his eventual undoing.
Atiku’s bid for the Presidency this time around was dead on arrival when his inordinate ambition fractured his party into 3 parts, with Alhaji Rabiu Kwankwanso and Mr. Peter Obi breaking away to the NNPP and the Labour Party respectively. The massive loss he suffered in traditional PDP zones and States is a clear testament to this. One wonders, then, how he expected to have won the election. It is also comical to see that he claims victory at the polls together with Mr. Peter Obi with whom his party has been holding Press Conferences.
Nigerians have since seen through the ambition of Atiku Abubakar that it is merely self-serving. Hence, he has run for Presidency at every point in time in the last 30 years, irrespective of the zoning tilt of the nation. Following his successive failures and rejection by Nigerians in different elections, it should be clear to him by now that he is simply unelectable. The expositions relating his self-confessed mode of syphoning public funds whilst in office through SPVs further dented his aspiration before Nigerians.
Atiku Abubakar’s decision to challenge the outcome of the results is welcome. We are prepared to meet his challenge, no matter the nature of the challenge, anywhere and anytime. If Atiku Abubakar is not embracing the olive branch extended to him and other losers in the 2023 elections by the President-elect, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the least he can do is to quietly relocate to Dubai which has become his traditional home base.
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