PDP Replies Tinubu over Atiku’s Role in Obasanjo Govt
* Says ex-VP only defended constitution, democracy
*Ayu to Nigerians: blame APC for high cost of living
Chuks Okocha in Abuja and Fidelis David in Akure
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Presidential Campaign Council, yesterday, berated the presidential candidate of All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, for allegedly standing history on its head over the misunderstandings between its candidate, Atiku Abubakar, and former President Olusegun Obasanjo. The campaign council said the former vice president only defended democracy.
Similarly, National Chairman of PDP, Dr. Iyorchia Ayu, told Nigerians to hold the ruling APC responsible for the high cost of living and economic decline in the country. Ayu spoke yesterday after the installation of former governorship candidate of PDP in Ondo State, Mr. Eyitayo Jegede, SAN, as Balogun of the Cathedral Church of Saint David, Ijomu Akure, in the Ondo State capital.
Tinubu had in Warri accused Atiku of quarrelling with his then boss, Obasanjo. Tinubu alleged that Atiku “fought” Obasanjo while in office.
But one of the PDP campaign spokespersons, Senator Dino Melaye, said Tinubu, in a fit of temporary incoherence, departed from issues and devoted his attention to Atiku.
Melaye said, “It’s not a surprise that Tinubu would castigate a man, who defended the rule of law; a man who is running from the law on many fronts cannot see merit in defending the rule of law.
“It is to Atiku’s eternal credit that he stood firm in pursuit of his conviction that the loyalty of public officers is to the constitution and not to individuals.
“This position will definitely be at variance with the disposition of a man of tyrannical antecedents, like Tinubu, who in exhibition of undemocratic tendencies fought his female Deputy Governor, Mrs Kofo Akereke-Bucknor, until she was removed from office.
“The treatment he gave to Mr Femi Pedro was not any better. Why then did he focus on the jot in someone’s eyes while overlooking the log in his own.”
Melaye said the removal of Tinubu’s first deputy governor from office was a gross betrayal of Afenifere, which had nominated the former deputy governor as part of the group’s understanding for supporting Tinubu’s election as governor of Lagos State.
Melaye stated, “This conduct is a proof that Tinubu can not be trusted with power. Day by day, it is becoming apparent who to trust with power between Atiku and Tinubu. While Atiku defended the constitution and the rule of law, Tinubu has no record of such. Rather, he remains a perpetual candidate of legal inquisitions.
“With Tinubu’s insistence to continue to fumble on campaign rostrum and entertain crowds at political venues, he needs to focus on what works for Nigeria and not a continuous descent into Tom and Jerry stories about Atiku.”
In a similar development, Atiku restated his commitment to the restructuring of the country, if elected president.
He stated, “During my engagements last week with the Lagos Business School Alumni Association and the Nigerian Guild of Editors, I reiterated my commitment to restructuring.
“I also made it clear that I have, at the ready, a working document that outlines areas where I shall pursue constitutional reforms through the National Assembly. Dear friend, let me make it even clearer: we must restructure to recover Nigeria.”
Atiku said after more than seven years of APC plunging 63 per cent of Nigerians into multi-dimensional poverty, the country needed an aggressive policy of economic and political recovery that will put more power in the hands of everyday people.
“This is what is at the heart of my restructuring agenda. But I need you to help drive this agenda. The more hands that are on the deck, the greater our chances of rolling back the damage the APC has done in the past over seven years.”
Meanwhile, Ayu, who blamed APC for destroying the economy of the country, alleged its government brought untold hardship on the people.
Ayu, who was represented by National Secretary of PDP, Senator Sam Anyanwun, at the installation of Jegede, as Balogun of the Cathedral Church of Saint David, said life had become unbearable for many Nigerians since 2015, when the ruling APC assumed the leadership of the country. He said the only way out was to vote out the party and install the government that would bring development to the people.
The PDP national chairman stated, “Nigerians are suffering. The price of a bag of rice is more than the minimum wage of workers. When PDP was ruling, things were cheap. University students have stayed at home for almost a year under the leadership of APC government.
“Atiku is the only pan Nigeria candidate. Others are regional candidates. It is obvious from the performance of APC-led government that Atiku will win. APC is camping for PDP. APC is dead. Atiku is the most experienced in the country. The ticket of Atiku-Okowa is the best for the country.”