Adedayo Akinwale in Abuja
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has named a former governor of Jigawa state, Mallam Sule Lamido; former National Chairman of PDP, Senator Ahmed Makarfi; Speaker of House of Representatives, Hon. Yakubu Dogara, and the Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremmadu, as Technical Advisers to its Presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar.
The main opposition party also named Lamido as the Chairman of Elder’s Council for the campaign. Alhaji Kawu Baraje has also been appointed as Technical Adviser to the Director General of the Campaign, Senator Bukola Saraki, while Dr. Doyin Okupe was named the Media Adviser to the Director General
Meanwhile, 140 out of the 145 support groups that withdrew their support for Atiku have returned to the PDP after a brief foray in the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The Coalition of Atikuate Leaders Forum, at a press conference held at the party’s Presidential Campaign Headquarters, Abuja, Monday announced their return to the party and their collective resolve to end their support for the APC and its presidential candidate, President Muhammadu Buhari.
About 145 PDP support groups had earlier abandoned their support for Atiku for the All Progressive Congress over allegations of marginalisation, ingratitude and lack of support.
They admitted they were aggrieved but stated that after reassurances from the Director General of Atiku Support Group, Math Yeduma, they resolved to return and work for the successful election of Atiku Abubakar.
Its National Coordinator, Mr. Franklin Eze, and National Secretary, Oyegoke Olawale, said that the coalition had resolved to put their grievances behind.
The Coordinator dissociated the coalition from what he described as self serving activities of a few members who may still be working for the ruling party despite the retreat.
Olawale noted, “We have come to state categorically that of the alleged 145 support groups, not less than 140 groups, as you can see, are still with His Excellency Alhaji Atiku Abubakar except for ‘Atiku reloaded’ support group, led by El-Mikedo and a few others like him who have decided to reduce the nobility associated with politics and politicking into a bread and butter business.
“Therefore, let nobody use the names of our various groups to go about collecting money from APC as that amounts to impersonation, outright falsehood and political prostitution…”
“We cannot associate our groups with a government that has absolute and outright disregard for the rule of law that allows for a just and fair society, a government that has annexed the Nigerian Police Force (NPF) and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as an extension of her party.”