A presidential aspirant of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, has congratulated former Vice President Atiku Abubakar on his victory at the presidential primary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
In a statement on Sunday, Tinubu believes Atiku, who will now fly the main opposition party’s flag again in the 2023 general elections, will be a worthy opponent.
“I welcome the victory of Alhaji Atiku Abubakar as the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in the just concluded primary,” he said. “I look forward to squaring up with him as a worthy opponent in the coming election.”
Atiku will be contesting for the highest office in the land for the sixth time having lost to President Muhammadu Buhari of the ruling APC in the 2019 polls.
He was elected as the PDP candidate at the party’s primary held on Saturday at the Velodrome of the Moshood Abiola Stadium in Abuja, where hundreds of delegates voted for the aspirants of their choice.
The 75-year-old polled 371 votes to win the party’s ticket ahead of Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State who scored 237 votes to come second in the contest.
Former Senate President Bukola Saraki (70); Akwa Ibom State Governor Udom Emmanuel (38), Bauchi State Governor Bala Mohammed (38), Former Senate President Pius Anyim (14), Mrs Tari Diana Oliver (One), and Mr Sam Ohuabunwa (1) shared the remainder of the valid votes.
While congratulating Atiku, Tinubu, who is hoping to win the APC delegates’ support to get the party’s ticket, said the former vice president’s victory did not come as a surprise to Nigerians because of his vast experience as a statesman and veteran of many presidential contests from 1993.
He stated that the coming election should be about issues that would improve the quality of life of Nigerians, as well as bring peace, progress, political stability, and solve myriad of socio-political challenges and insecurity facing the country.
“As we move further into the election season, I charge the PDP presidential candidate and all political actors across party lines that we should make this election season one that is devoid of bitterness, rancour, and strife,” the former Lagos State governor advised.
“We should make our campaigns peaceful and issue-based. Election season should be a festival of ideas that will uplift our country and improve the living condition of all our people. Unfortunately for the PDP, its candidate will be burdened to explain why Nigerians should give it another opportunity, after squandering 16 years at the central government, without much to show.
“Nigerians are yet to forget the national ruin and mismanagement of our country for 16 years by successive PDP administration and this bad memory will dog the campaign of the PDP Candidate. Nevertheless, I once again congratulate our former Vice President for his victory in his party’s primary.”