The presidential candidate of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, Sunday, mocked his counterpart in the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, as a clown, who was only fit to contest the post of “Grand Comedian of the Federal Republic”.
Atiku advised APC to immediately replace Tinubu following his unceasing helpless gaffes, to avoid further embarrassments.
Atiku spoke in a statement by his Special Assistant on Public Communications, Phrank Shaibu.
The PDP candidate alleged that Tinubu was only suitable for the position of comic chief, and never president of Nigeria, going by his error-ridden utterances, which signify failing health.
Relatedly, in Kaduna State, director-general of the PDP campaign council, Haruna Sa’eed, dismissed Governor Nasir El-Rufai’s recent apology to the people of the state as “meaningless”, because it would not “reverse the hardship and pain he had inflicted on the people”.
Atiku said in the statement that it was common knowledge that Tinubu goofed every time he came out in public to speak.
The statement said, “If he is not saying that voter’s card has expiration date; he is saying that young Nigerians are Tweeting on WhatsApp or that 50 million youths should be recruited into the Nigerian Army and be fed with cassava in the morning, and Agbado in the night. How can you say Nigerians are Tweeting on WhatsApp?
“Common, is that the kind of person we want to hand 21st Century Nigeria over to? In his latest gaffe at the Lagos rally, he asked Nigerians to get their APV in order to vote for APC, when even primary school children know that the PVC is the only item that admits a voter into a polling unit.
“Without mincing words Tinubu’s gaffes already supply comedians, skit makers, meme-makers, and TikTokers with content. He is a self-writing joke and will make Nigeria a bye-word for scorn among the comity of nations, which is why he shouldn’t get close to power.
“Truth be told, lack of mental depth complicated by dementia occasioned by old age is the most mis-recommending criterion against a Tinubu presidency. And examples abound to buttress this point. Just listen to any of his extempore speeches and what you find is lack of coherence, logic and verve.
“It is for the purpose of unmasking the real Tinubu and exposing him for who he really is, that we have challenged the APC standard bearer to an hour-long television interview.”
The statement added that APC’s seven and a half years reign was a sad reminder of Nigeria’s arrested development since 2015, when they came to power.
It said Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu’s claim at the Lagos rally that Tinubu would lift Nigerians out of hardship and hunger was an indictment on the APC, an admission that, indeed, over 133 million Nigerians now live in abject poverty, as reported by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).
Atiku stated further regarding Tinubu and his party, “Now they are selling a message of a renewed hope. It is common knowledge that darkness cannot cure darkness and sickness cannot cure sickness. How can the APC be promising to fix problems exacerbated by the APC? This is balderdash.”
According to the statement, the most compelling reason for APC to be de-registered is the fact that it has driven millions of Nigerians deeper into poverty since 2015, when it came to power, and spent trillions of naira procuring hunger, darkness, and insecurity.
Atiku stated further in the statement by Shaibu, “If the APC are not keen on replacing this disaster of a candidate, they should in the alternative apologise to all Nigerians for bringing them nothing but suffering of unquantifiable proportion since 2015, and proceed to make a solemn pledge not to have anything to do with governance, especially, with the February 25 election fast approaching.
“I must confess that I consider the remarks credited to the APC presidential candidate, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, on Saturday, November 26th, 2022, where he laboured, albeit unsuccessfully, to paint the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate as ungrateful and overambitious as not only offensive but reckless.
“Instead of attacking Atiku, he should have dissipated that energy on telling Nigerians about himself, especially, at this time, when it is said at various fora that the only thing that is real about Tinubu is his person and that every other ascription on him is a borrowed robe.
“To be sure, Nigerians believe that Tinubu should come in the open to effectively disclaim the allegation that his name, as it appears on public documents, is not his name; that the parents he claimed were not his; that the certificates he claimed to be his are not and that the schools he claimed to have attended didn’t know him.
“The issue of which schools he attended is already in the public domain, as only few months ago, he told the Independent National electoral commission (INEC) that he didn’t attend primary and secondary schools. The former Lagos governor, however, claimed he had two degrees from two American universities, which he further stated had been stolen by unknown soldiers during the military junta of the 1990s.”
He stated further, “Lagos is used as evidence of his leadership, but Lagos is the major reason he should never be president and the leader of the country and party. He will become an immutable sole administrator in Nigeria as he is in Lagos.
“If Tinubu’s ambition were about good governance, we dare to ask why he forced former Governor Ambode out? This self-appointed ‘maker’ of President Buhari and ’emilokan’ exponent, wants to be the Groom in every wedding and the corpse in every funeral. The centre of the political universe.
“In Lagos, he is the State. No one can be anything without his approval. Governors are his little errand boys and can only disagree with him at their risk. He keeps them guessing about getting second term so he can have absolute control over them. Only Fashola showed some independent streak. The rest are like cyborgs. The current one is acting like a victim of a brain transplant
“Since emerging as the presidential candidate of the party in early June, Tinubu has not shared a stage with any of the candidates. Tinubu has continued to avoid public scrutiny or elaborate media interviews where he can answer questions about his source of wealth and his background. Now that he is seeking the highest office in the land, Tinubu has made it clear that he will not attend media interviews or debates. In other words, he wants automatic job employment without an interview.
But the issue of his involvement in drugs needs to be settled once and for all so that Nigerians would know whether Ahmed Bola Tinubu is an innocent man getting a bad whack from the opposition, or whether he is a danger to Nigeria and its democracy, because Nigeria cannot afford to elect a drug lord.
“The question is, did Bola Tinubu ever have something to do with heroin trafficking and money laundering leading to the forfeiture of $460,000? If the answer is in the affirmative, then the APC should do the most honourable thing by apologising to Nigerians and withdrawing him from the race because he presents a major national security risk and places Nigeria in the rank of pariah narco-nations.”
Meanwhile, in a statement Sunday, Sa’eed said the attempt by El-Rufai to distance himself from the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state, Senator Uba Sani, was like a crude attempt to separate conjoined twins.
“El-Rufai cannot deliberately and recklessly create hardship for the people of Kaduna State for eight years and then think that he can conveniently utter a political apology at the twilight of his tenure,” Saeed said.
El-Rufai had while addressing party members during the inauguration of the APC campaign council, last week in Kaduna, apologised to those he might have offended in the course of his work and asked for forgiveness.
He had said, “We know in the course of this job, we have offended some people. They should forgive us. I will not contest again, so, do not blame others for my mistakes. Those I mistakenly offended, I seek their forgiveness.”
But Saeed, in the statement, said, “On the surface, this apology might look noble, but since El-Rufai has, probably, not heard of the wisdom of Benjamin Franklin, who admonished people not to ruin an apology with an excuse, this apology, apart from being made in a political gathering to suit itching ears, is bereft of honesty and sincerity.”
The PDP chieftain said El- Rufai and Sani “are one and the same. The fear that the people of Kaduna should even entertain if the anointed candidate would not exceed his anointer in apathy.”
He maintained, “In addition to the fact that an apology followed by an excuse means that the same deliberate act could be repeated again, it came at a time when it lacks substance and offensive in context.
“More disingenuous is his attempt to separate his insensitive and intolerant mode of governance from his anointed candidate in 2023. It means he is repudiating the known democratic principles of governance as a continuous process. So sad!
“El-Rufai cannot deliberately and recklessly create hardship for the people of Kaduna State for eight years and then think that he can conveniently utter a political apology at the twilight of his tenure.
“At what point did he think an apology was appropriate? Was his apology targeted at those he sacked from work without paying them their entitlement? Those whose homes and businesses were demolished on the altar of aestheticism?
“Was his political apology targeted at the lives of millions of Kaduna people that he endangered when he made reckless and boastful statements on insecurity? Was his apology targeted at the millions of Kaduna people who, today, can’t go to their farms or even stay at their homes because of the pervasive insecurity in almost all parts of the state?
“Was his apology aimed at the bastardisation of the state’s civil service, or his naked intolerance to those, who dared to oppose him?
“El- Rufai can apologise severally before he leaves, but it won’t change the fact that his meaningless apology won’t reverse the hardship and pain he brought to the people of Kaduna State. It rankles more that this apology came without restitution, which smacks of only a cosmetic act without substance.”