Asiwaju Bola Tinubu
Reacting to the claims by OlisaMetuh, Peoples Democratic Party’s National Publicity Secretary that Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, national leader of the Action Congress of Nigeria, endorsed President Goodluck Jonathan’s election at a lecture he gave at Chatham House, London, Sunday Dare, Tinubu’s special adviser on Media yesterday accused the PDP of wilful mischief.
He said: “Tinubu’s statement was deliberately quoted out of context. The Peoples Democratic Party suffers from selective amnesia by its claim that Tinubu endorsed Goodluck Jonathan’s presidential win as free and fair.”
But putting the records straight, Dare insisted that though Tinubu said he thought Jonathan won the election, his tally was exaggerated, thus casting a slur on the integrity of his victory.
Dare quoted Tinubu to have said: “I believe Jonathan won the election but that the returns attributed to him in some parts of the country obviously appeared exaggerated. Thus, celebrating the election as free and fair might lead to INEC beating its chest and might short-circuit the process of fundamental electoral reform. We must not relent in our struggle for fundamental reforms.”
He said in the speech, “Tinubu had warned about the danger of draping the 2011 elections in qualities they did not deserve,” adding that such false hope could come back to haunt Nigeria, if future elections were not improved upon, saying that by then, the damage might even be beyond the judiciary to fix.
Dare wondered how Tinubu’s analysis of the 2011 elections amounted to endorsing Jonathan’s elections.
On the endorsement of the election by foreign observers, Dare said Tinubu had warned, in the same speech, that “such endorsement was hasty, misleading and did not represent the true picture of the situation.”
Dare cautioned PDP against muddling up facts for political mischief and counselled it to devote more time to reading the full Chatham House speech, instead of quoting it out of context to confuse and confound unsuspecting Nigerians.