Adedayo Akinwale in Abuja
The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, has said that it is not enough for President Muhammadu Buhari to condemn do-or-die politics in his new year message if he cannot condemn overzealous aides and security agencies.
The former vice president who said this in a statement by his media aide, Mr. Paul Ibe, advised Buhari to go beyond lip service and urge security chiefs to be politically neutral during the election.
He added that their loyalty to the constitution doesn’t include putting themselves at the service of the ruling party at the expense of free and fair elections.
Reacting to the President’s message, Atiku said leaders should lead by example by preaching peace at all times.
Atiku said, “It is not enough for the President to condemn do-or-die politics if he cannot control the activities of overzealous aides, including the country’s security chiefs, especially the Inspector General of Police whose activities lately gives him away as a partisan player in negation of his constitutional role.”
He urged Buhari to follow the example of former President Goodluck Jonathan, who, in 2015, walked the talk of the 2015 elections that his ambition was not worth the blood of any Nigerian.
He noted, “Jonathan lived by his noble words and statesmanship when he conceded defeat without hesitation, thereby contributing to peaceful conduct of election.” The PDP presidential candidate reminded Buhari that it was not enough to preach peace when he cannot publicly condemn the violent behaviour of his supporters who harass, molest and publicly humiliate his opponents and their supporters.