Atiku to Buhari: Let me help you run an issue-based campaign, not this nonsense Updated for 2021

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Updated: February 28, 2021


The presidential campaign in Nigeria does not seem to be based on any issue, partly because the political parties have not defined any, partly because the media do not seem to understand their roles and the non governmental organizations are amazingly silent at a time they should set the agenda. 

There are dozens of presidential candidates hoping to replace Muhammadu Buhari, the retired Major-General turned politician who returned to power in 2015 three decades after he was overthrown, but many of them are weakened by a weak media and a silent civil society. 

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Buhari in 2014 and 2015 promised to crush Boko Haram, punish the corrupt and revive the Nigerian economy, but so far, he has achieved very little. 

However, those seeking to replacing him have not capitalized on his failures.

With the campaign seeming to be directionless, the two main political parties, the opposition People’s Democratic Party and the ruling All Progressives Congress seem to have Limited themselves to attacking each other, rather than saying exactly what they will do if elected or re-elected, how they will do it, where they will find the resources, the technology and the people.

The attack continued on Wednesday when the Atiku campaign sent a message to TODAY NEWS AFRICA in Washington DC, offering to help the Buhari camp run an issue based campaign. 

Read their full statement below 

Just last week, our attention was drawn to a statement by the All Progressives Congress falsely accusing the Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party of attempting to smuggle in large sums of money into the nation for the purpose of funding his campaign. 

In the said statement from November 5, 2018, the APC called for security agents to be on the watch to prevent the imaginary ‘illicit cash’ from entering Nigeria.

Thus, we are surprised that the same APC which made that false allegation has made a 180-degree turn by releasing a new statement contradicting their earlier statement and alleging that the former Vice President is broke. 

In their statement, they contend that ‘Atiku Abubakar is at a crossroads on how to source funds for the 2019 electioneering campaign.’

Our response is to urge the APC to make up its mind on which lie it wants to tell the Nigerian people and then stick to that lie. As a party in power, there ought to be more stability in the APC at least to give the public and the international community some assurance that the party is not imploding. No wonder there is a lot of policy flip flop under the APC administration!

We know that the APC is desperate to distract attention from the recent indictment of Vice President Osinbajo by the House of Representatives for Grand corruption and the interrogation of their chairman, Adams Oshiomhole, by the Department of State Security on charges of collecting huge bribes to influence party primaries. 

Given the sordid state of things in the APC and its imminent implosion over money politics, we are not surprised that the APC is throwing wild allegations at former Vice President Atiku Abubakar in the hope that something will stick. 

Our advise to the APC is that they should send their spokesman to the Atiku Presidential Campaign Organisation for a two weeks crash course on how to run an issue-based campaign that is guided by civility and refined language. 

While the APC is throwing about baseless accusations, our candidate, Atiku Abubakar, is set to launch tangible  policies that will Get Nigeria Working Again in the next week. Our campaign is focused on addressing the concerns and the welfare of Nigerians by Atikulating plans to move Nigerians out of poverty. 

It is obvious that the APC is badly in need of such tutoring. 

We also sympathize with Chairman Oshiomhole on his ordeal and assure him that if he is finding the APC too hot for him, he may want to throw in the towel and join the large number of APC chieftains who have washed their hands off the party and its hydra-headed problems.

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Simon Ateba
Simon Ateba
Simon Ateba covers the White House, the U.S. government, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other financial and international institutions for Today News Africa in Washington D.C. Simon can be reached on simonateba@todaynewsafrica.com

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