By Marvellous Nyang
The presidential candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, has told his All Progressives Congress (APC) rival, Bola Tinubu to stop shedding crocodile tears, saying attacking President Muhammadu Buhari over the fuel scarcity and naira redesign won’t safe him in the coming election.
Atiku, reacting through his Special Assistant, Public Communication, Phrank Shaibu, to Tinubu’s outburst in Ogun State on Wednesday, January 25, 2023, claiming the fuel scarcity and the naira redesign were ploys against his possible electoral victory, said whatever the situation affects all contestants and not Tinubu alone.
“Even though the CBN policy affects all 18 political parties, Tinubu is the only one frustrated because his plan to deploy bullion vans and bribe poor voters and security agents on the day of election has failed woefully,” Atiku said.
Though a Muslim, Atiku cited a biblical verse to substantiate his claims, noting, “Well, the Holy Bible says in Proverbs 28:1 that: “The wicked run when no one is chasing them, but an honest person is as brave as a lion.”
Atiku contended that Tinubu has become frustrated by his inability to stop the cashless policy and currency redesign of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) that will curb vote buying and enhance the credibility of next month’s election.
He also recalled that on the eve of the 2019 Presidential election, two cash-laden bullion vans were pictured entering Tinubu’s premises located on 26 Bourdillon Road, Ikoyi. Several petitions were written to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) but nothing was done.”
The former Vice President said noted that “Tinubu, frustrated by President Buhari’s unwillingness to attend some of his insipid rallies, launched an attack against the President who doubles as the Minister of Petroleum.”
“It is funny that Tinubu is just commenting over the fuel scarcity which started in different parts of the country as far back as February 2022. In Lagos, where Tinubu claims to be the landlord, the state has been witnessing fuel queues since last November. It is therefore dubious of Tinubu to try to extricate himself from the failures of his party because elections are 30 days away,” Atiku said.
He averred that “Tinubu urgently needs to be on medication since he has forgotten that his party is currently in office. “How can the APC defeat the APC?”
While also faulting Tinubu’s promise to reduce fuel price to N200, Atiku said, “Besides, the so-called Lagos godfather, who says he will remove petrol subsidy on his first day in office if he wins, and told the people of Ogun State that he will push the price of petrol below N200 per litre. It is obvious that he has not even read his own manifesto.”
“Tinubu’s paranoia is clearly getting the best of him. He has gone from attacking the leader of his own party to Igbos and northerners all because he believes they are not supporting his failed Presidential ambition.”
“For a man who claimed to have single-handedly made Buhari President, it is funny that he is now running from pillar to post all in a bid to save what is left of his failed campaign.”
Similarly, the PDP Presidential Campaign Council (PCC), reacting on Wednesday evening, accused the APC presidential candidate, Tinubu, of trying to blackmail his party “over his looming devastating rejection by Nigerians.”
The statement signed and released by the spokesperson of the Atiku/Okowa Campaign, Kola Ologbondiyan, said blackmailing President Muhammadu Buhari and blaming the APC-led Federal Government would not help Tinubu.
“Our campaign finds it pathetic that Tinubu is seeking a face-saving measure ahead of his shattering electoral defeat by shedding crocodile tears and claiming that the redesigning of the naira notes and the fuel crisis under the APC administration, which he has reportedly been corruptly benefitting, were plots to scuttle the 2023 general elections.
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“It is unfortunate that Tinubu is trying to hoodwink Nigerians by seeking to exonerate himself and blame others in the Buhari led-APC administration for the biting fuel scarcity in the country when in reality he (Tinubu) is known to be behind the insensitive and anti-people policies that have brought so much calamity to our country including the current persistent fuel scarcity,” Ologbondiyan said.
According to him, “politicians who have always won elections by relying on bullion vans have become troubled over the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) monetary policy to redesign the naira.
“More reprehensible is the fact that a few months to the end of the Buhari government, Asiwaju Tinubu is now struggling to distance himself from an administration which he told the world that he brought into office just because he wants to beguile Nigerians and take their votes.”
“How can Asiwaju Tinubu accuse an administration he had been a part of since 2015 of trying to sabotage the 2023 elections except he is making revelations to Nigerians about their plans? It is imperative to state that Nigerians, who are prepared to trek distances to cast their votes are the patriots who have been at the butt of pains which the government Asiwaju Tinubu installed has foisted on them.
“In any case, from the songs of the lamentation of Tinubu, it is clear that his Presidential life ambition has collapsed,” Ologbondiyan said.