• Atiku, APC exchange fire
• You’re suffering depression over defeat, APC hits back
The All Progressives Congress (APC) has dismissed claim by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, that they won the 2019 presidential election by 1.6 million votes margin as a confirmation that they were suffering from post-election depression and hallucination.
The APC presidential candidate and incumbent president, Muhammadu Buhari defeated Atiku with over 15,191,847 votes, winning in 19 of the 36 states.
But Atiku who has vowed that he would reclaim his “stolen” mandate in the court, on Monday, filed a petition at the tribunal, challenging the validity of the election in which Buhari was returned for a second term.
While reacting to the claims by the opposition party on its victory in the just-concluded presidential poll, APC’s spokesman, Mallam Lanre Issa-Onilu, dismissed Atiku’s claim that the server of INEC indicated he ‘won’ the presidential election by 1.6 million votes as hollow and ridiculous.
“Following the outcome of the presidential election, during which a vast majority of Nigerians reaffirmed their unshaken belief in President Muhammadu Buhari to continue to steer the affairs of the country for another four years, we have watched in disbelief and utter amusement how the opposition PDP and its presidential candidate, Atiku, have engaged in series of circus shows to cheer up their crestfallen and disillusioned members.
“While the APC is not oblivious of the PDP’s antics to discredit the credible presidential electoral process, acknowledged by local and international observers, we sympathise with Atiku for the crushing defeat handed him by President Buhari through the votes of Nigerians.
“Judging by Atiku and PDP’s recent utterances and actions, it is now clear that they have slipped into severe depression and post-defeat hallucination that have left many Nigerians questioning their current state of mind.
“After weeks of dilly-dallying, the PDP has woken up to the stark reality of its electoral defeat and decided to follow the constitutional path of filing a petition at the election tribunal. However, of all the prayers of Atiku before the election tribunal, which are at best hollow, the most ridiculous is his claim that the server of INEC indicated he ‘won’ the presidential election by 1.6 million votes.
“A few questions would suffice: Is this phantom figure of 1.6 million votes Dubai-invented? Was the result sold to Atiku by his numerous marabouts, who we understand, had assured him that the last election was a done deal for him?
“Most importantly, we note Atiku’s consistent reference to the “INEC server” as if he is the custodian of that platform. Indeed, Atiku’s constant reference to the INEC server should raise concerns as it is becoming apparent that he and the PDP are up for some dastard activities that are targeted at jeopardising the INEC database and internal storage system.
“We recall the widespread reported cases of several programmed card readers that were retrieved from some PDP agents and their failed attempt to hack the INEC database in the lead up to the then postponed presidential election.
“We remind the Atiku and PDP that Nigerians saw through the devious schemes aimed at thwarting their will. Consequently, majority of the voters handed them a harsh verdict – that verdict remains sacrosanct,” Issa-Onilu said.
Court ‘ll restore my stolen mandate – Atiku
But the PDP standard bearer and former vice president, Atiku, has expressed confidence that the judiciary would restore his “stolen mandate.”
He stated this yesterday when he paid a courtesy on Southern Middle-Belt leaders, at the Abuja residence of former federal commissioner for information and South-south leader, Chief Edwin Clark.
The elders comprising the Pan Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF), Northern Elders’ Forum (NEF), Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Afenifere and Middle Belt Forum (MBF), had adopted Atiku two weeks to the election at the Summit of Nigerian Leaders and Elders.
Atiku thanked the leaders for the support and informed them that he has filed his petition.
“We have rejected the result of the election. We have filed our petition before the tribunal or the courts because we believe this is a mandate that has been stolen from the Nigerian people. And I believe that the courts will do justice in this case. We still have confidence in our courts and we believe justice will be done.”
He told the elders that he would keep his promise on restructuring so that every region would have a sense of belonging.
“I believe this is a struggle we must continue together and I believe it is achievable. Nigeria has nothing to fear about restructuring.
“Of course, we have also come to realise and accept that the basis of our unity, our coexistence lies fundamentally on restructuring this country so that every part can have a sense of belonging and opportunity to exploit their human and material resources for the development of the citizens while remaining in the same country.
“I therefore believe this struggle is a struggle that we must continue together and we will achieve it and I believe it is also achievable. I strongly commit myself to that and Nigerians don’t have anything to fear or dread about restructuring of this country. After all, we started as a restructured federation and everybody felt at home with that arrangement.”
Clark lauded Atiku for going to court.