Adedayo Akinwale in Abuja
The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, has berated the All Progressive Congress (APC) for destroying the country’s economy, saying the economy is crawling at two per cent, as against six per cent under PDP government.
Atiku made the comment yesterday at the Dan Anyiam Stadium, Owerri, capital of Imo State, during the South-east rally of the party, where he urged Nigerians to reject the APC and cast their votes for the PDP for them to have their future guaranteed.
At the rally which was attended by the National Chairman of the party, Uche Secondus; Atiku’s running mate, Peter Obi; Senate President, Bukola Saraki; his deputy, Ike Ekweremadu; governors of Enugu, Ebonyi, Abia States, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, Dave Umahi, Okezie Ikpeazu respectively; Imo State governorship standard bearer of the party, Emeka Ihedioha; former Secretary to the Federal Government (SFG), Anyim Pius Anyim, among others, Atiku urged Nigerians to ensure that they cast and protect their votes, accusing the ruling party of plan to rig the elections.
According to him, “They have destroyed our economy. When PDP was in government, we were growing at six per cent. Today, we are less than three per cent, and our population is growing at three per cent. Now our people are poor, this is what APC has brought to us. We have promised to restore the economy; to get the economy growing again so that there would be prosperity, jobs for all of you.”
Atiku added that the reason the party held the rally in Imo State was because the party would take over the state in the next election.
He added, “Therefore, I want you to make sure that on the 16th of next month after voting, you remain here to protect your vote because the APC is not campaigning. They are not talking to you. They are not communicating to you. All what they are banking on is to rig. Therefore, stand and protect your votes and come out and vote.
“We have promised jobs for our young men and women. You either have an employment or business. We will help you set up your businesses. We pledge that we are going to restructure this country. APC is not going to do it. Therefore, don’t vote APC. It is an evil party. Since Nigeria’s existence, we have never seen so many young men and women that are unemployed. They have turned this country into the headquarters of poverty in the world.”
Also, the Senate President and Director General of the Campaign, Dr. Bukola Saraki, said the rally was a big signal that the entire Southeast, the entire Nigeria are ready for a new president.
He said, “They tell lies and said Atiku can’t go to America but he went to and came back. He is ready to lead Nigeria because he has the capacity. He has reserved 40 per cent for you youths, do you see any youth in Buhari’s government? This man will create jobs, he will take care of the youths and he will unite Nigeria.”
Also, the PDP National Chairman, Prince Uche Secondus, said Nigeria was ripe for an energetic, tested and tried president like Atiku unlike the APC candidate who cannot engage or even articulate issues as was witnessed by the whole world in a recent televised interview.