PDP IN SERIOUS DIFFICULTIES OVER FUNDING OF ATIKU CAMPAIGN, APC ALLEGES

The All Progressives Congress (APC) yesterday alllged that opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate Atiku Abubakar is finding it difficult to raise cash to fund his campaign.

It urged anti-graft agencies to closely monitor the inflow of money so that illegal money is not channeled into the campaign.

Also yesterday, the Buhari Media Organisation (BMO) described the Strategy meeting of the PDP in Dubai as a jamboree, which is lacking in logic, and commitment to solving Nigeria’s problems.

APC Deputy National Publicity Secretary Yekini Nabena, in a statement, said: ”The presidential candidate expects the party to provide funds for his campaign. This is the Buhari Era, an era of strict accountability and transparency in the use and application of public funds and not the Jonathan Era in 2015 when the national treasury was opened to PDP leaders to prosecute the presidential campaign.”

“The party leaders are therefore in serious difficulties and dilemma on how to source funds to run the Atiku Presidential Campaign. Some financers of the party expect that the candidate…, should have the financial capacity to run his campaign. With the candidate’s expectation that it is the party that will fund his campaign it is now clear that they are at a crossroads and the chickens have come home to roost.

“The anti-corruption agencies should gird their loins and ensure that all sources of campaign fund by the political parties are closely monitored and recover the funds looted during the Jonathan Era. Such recovered funds should be applied for the benefits of the poor masses who were denied democracy benefits during the 16years misrule of the PDP.

“It is now clear to the members of the PDP who were deceived into believing that their presidential candidate is a man of stupendous wealth that it is all a mirage, a 419 packaging and that they entered a ‘one chance’ bus.

“As we approach February 2019 when elections will be held in Nigeria, the electorate are becoming more conscious and aware of the deceitful nature of their so-called leaders. Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, the presidential candidate of the PDP, is nationally known as a man of immense wealth. Apart from his being a retired officer of the Department of Customs & Excise not above the rank of Deputy Director, and not known to have been an exceptionally successful businessman, his claims to stupendous wealth and source are questionable and lack credibility.

“During the “dollar rain” at the Port Harcourt convention of the Party, he outspent all the other aspirants and easily clinched the party’s presidential candidacy ticket.

“Having emerged without the support of the “Governor General” of the party, who had earlier produced the party’s National Chairman and ordered the party to hold the convention in Port Harcourt, Alhaji Atiku is now on ‘his own’ in bankrolling his campaign.

“The Nigerian electorate has a better alternative— to stick to the clean, honest and transparent leadership of Muhammadu Buhari GCFR who has done so much to ensure better future for them after the 16 years misrule of the PDP.”

But the Atiku Media Office dismissed the insinuations, saying no amount of propaganda and lies would stop the former Vice President from being elected president in 2019. It said the elections would not be determined by money power.

BMO Chairman Niyi Akinsiju and Secretary Cassidy Madueke, said the content of the Dubai resolution was unpatriotic and meaningless and succeeds only in projecting the PDP leaders as being uneasy with patriotism.

The resolution, according to them, “proposes using religious & ethnic sentiments, lies and propaganda as its major campaign tool against the performing administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.

“But, of course, this has not come to us as a surprise as the party (PDP) used the same method in the run-up to the 2015 presidential election. What is surprising however is that despite PDP’s pretences about being a rebranded party that has learned its lessons, it indeed has learned nothing from the past.”

While calling on the PDP and its presidential candidate to desist from what is described as its usual campaign strategy of calumny, hatred, division and base sentiments, the organisation said “this style of campaign will never lead them to victory”.

“All that this PDP strategy can achieve is further destabilisation of this nation. It emphasises where we are different as a people, rather than how united we can be; or the things that make us more similar as a people. We advise the opposition party to find better strategy of selling its defective product, a strategy that does not threaten the unity of this country.

“We say without equivocation that the Buhari Campaign strategy will not descend that low, nor will it be targeted at smearing personalities. Rather, it will focus on the various achievements of President Muhammadu Buhari’s three and a half years in the office, achievements which are too numerous to mention here; from the successful fight against insurgency in the North East, restoring to glory a bastardised economy, growing a decayed, dilapidated and abandoned infrastructure and finally to creating, for the first time, a sustainable social welfare programme that is truly sustainable and for the people that need it the most-  the poorest of the poor and the most vulnerable of our society.

“This track record of performances and many more that the administration of the President has done, and still doing, with little resources, in just three years and a half and not 16 years of nothing, is what a campaign strategy should be about; certainly not some overpriced cooked-up alien ideas full of sound and fury, hate and bigotry, signifying nothing but divisive sentiments that are unwarranted and surely doomed to fall.

The Media Adviser to the former Vice President, Paul Ibe, dismissed the APC’s insinuation, saying the 2019 presidential election will not be about money but the supreme will of the people.

Ibe said: “Nothing can stop an idea whose time has come. Nothing can stop the zeal of Nigerians to elect the President of their choice. This election will not be won by money or lies or propaganda or intimidation but by the supreme will of the Nigerian people as expressed in their vote.

“Atiku Abubakar will be elected as President by Nigerians in February 2019 notwithstanding the machinations of the APC-led administration.”

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