Tunde Oyekola and Ademola Babalola
The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in the 2019 elections, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, on Wednesday berated the All Progressives Congress, saying steps taken by the APC since 2015 had ended in failure.
He declared that the party was on a rescue mission to save Nigeria from further sinking.
Speaking at the North-Central zonal presidential campaign rally held at the Metropolitan Square, Ilorin, Atiku said the APC had misgoverned the country by making promises which were not fulfilled.
He stated, “In 2015, the APC promised us security which they failed to provide. They promised us food on our table, but today we are hungry. They promised us good health facility and adequate supply of drugs in our hospitals which they failed to do. They promised to fight corruption but worsen the system.
“Every step they take is a failure. In terms of corruption, they are the worst; in the provision of security, they have failed; they failed to create jobs for our teeming youths and today, inflation has taken over. In 2014, Hajj fare was N600,000 but in 2018, it has jumped to N1.5m, food prices have gone up and they continue to tell the people of this country lies.”
“The PDP has come to rescue the people of the country from the suffering, which the APC has put us into,” he added.
Also speaking at the rally, the National Chairman of the PDP, Prince Uche Secondus, urged Nigerians to vote for the presidential candidate of the party, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, in order to rescue the nation from hunger.
Secondus said, “The nation is currently suffering from hunger and insecurity. There is a need for a competent and well experienced Nigerian to come on board to save us. As we are all aware Nigeria is in distress and we are in dire need of a well connected leader to rescue us.”
In his address, the Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki, who is the Director General of Atiku Campaign organization, urged Nigerians to vote President Muhammadu Buhari and the APC out of power in next year’s general election, lamenting that the APC had failed to deliver on all its 2015 campaign promises.
“The APC promised Nigeria a lot of things. They promised us security. Then we had security problem only in the North-East, but now it has extended to North-Central and even the North-West. APC has failed because security has worsened.
“People are dying of hunger because economy has gone terribly bad. They have also failed in fighting corruption. The hunger is serious in the country today. Nigeria is today world’s poverty capital. We need a president that will fix the economy, create jobs and unite Nigerians.
“This APC government must go because events of the past three years have shown that they don’t have solutions to all these problems. We must vote this government out and elect Atiku as our next president. My people of Kwara and North central, we must vote out Buhari. Atiku is solution to Nigeria’s problem.”
The PDP presidential campaign standard bearer also paid a courtesy call on the Emir of Ilorin, Alhaji Ibrahim Zulu-Gambari, where he debunked the report that the party rented crowd for its North-West zonal rally held in Sokoto.
He said, “There is no iota of truth in the claims that the crowd that you saw during our visit to Sokoto State were people hired from Niger Republic. They are our genuine supporters and that is a clear indication that people are tired of the current government. We are here to receive your blessings and permission to talk to our people and seek their votes for Alhaji Atiku Abubakar and Mr Peter Obi.”
Alhaji Atiku promised to maintain his aged long closeness with the Ilorin Emirate and further chart the way forward for the development of the state and nation at large if elected as president in 2019.
In his remarks, the Emir of Ilorin and Chairman Kwara State Traditional Council, Alhaji Ibrahim Sulu-Gambari, urged the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof. Mahmud Yakubu, to be an unbiased umpire in the 2019 elections.
He also advised the judiciary to act independent of all arms of government in order to discharge its roles as the hope of the common man in the country.
The Emir however said, “Your ambition is clear, legitimate and you need the protection of God for you to move round the nation for campaigns. Nigeria is so connected and we need to respect each other. I wish you all the best and Allah’s protection always.”
Oyo CP deploys area commanders, DPOs for Atiku’s campaign
Meanwhile, the Oyo State Commissioner of Police, Abiodun Odude, has deployed area commanders, divisional police officers and special security outfits in ensuring adequate security during Atiku’s campaign in Ibadan on Thursday.
Speaking with our correspondent on the level of preparedness of the police command last night, the Police Public Relations Officer, SP Adekunle Ajisebutu, said all arrangements had been put in place to ensure a hitch-free campaign for Atiku.
“The commissioner has directed the area commanders, the DPOs and other security outfits under the state police command to ensure adequate safety at the venue of the rally in Mapo and other dark and flash points.”
Ajisebutu said the development was in observance of the directives of the Inspector-General of Police that the police must be proactive and beef up security for all political parties during and after the 2019 general elections.
He said the police have been drafted to the Airport at Alakia and indeed awaken the surveillance and intelligence units to ensure there was no crisis.
The police image maker appealed to the supporters of the presidential candidate to conduct themselves in a peaceful manner and not do anything that would jeopardize the peace of the state