Updated: March 1, 2021
Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar should come to terms with his loss at the presidential election and stop whipping up primordial sentiments.
The Buhari Media Organisation (BMO) says his latest meeting in Abuja with some sectional leaders from southern Nigeria who backed his failed presidential bid shows that Atiku is still in denial over his loss in the election.
[read_more id="2" more="Read full article" less="Read less"]
BMO said in a statement signed by its Chairman Niyi Akinsiju and Secretary Cassidy Madueke that it is part of a ploy to further widen the country’s fault-lines at a time the former Vice President is claiming to have a national mandate.
“Since the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) declared President Muhammadu Buhari duly elected for a second term, the losing candidate had been laying claims to what he described as a stolen national mandate, but surprisingly he has been holding clandestine meetings with sectional heads.
“It is clearly a ploy by Atiku Abubakar to instigate political disaffection in a section of the country that gave him a large chunk of the votes he got on February 23, at a time he is also expressing optimism at getting a favourable response at the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal.
“We at BMO see the move as unbecoming of a former Vice president who, in spite of losing by almost four million votes to a more popular President Buhari, still managed to get reasonable votes even from other parts of the country where he did not perform creditably”, it said.
The pro-Buhari group noted that the outcome of the election showed that majority of Nigerians rejected the variant of restructuring that the PDP candidate attempted to sell to the people during the campaign season.
“Even after an overwhelming majority of registered voters across the country turned their backs on Atiku Abubakar and his party, he believes that he could still use ‘restructuring’ as a gambit to poison the minds of people.
“But the former Vice president should realise, as an elder statesman, that now that elections are over and he has opted to exercise his democratic right to seek redress in court, he should not be seen in a gathering where comments like ‘No restructuring, no Nigeria’ are made.
“We are convinced that Atiku’s loss show that more Nigerians were not interested in the type of restructuring that Edwin Clark and the rump of Afenifere are mouthing”
BMO also urged elders from some parts of the country to desist from making statements capable of fanning embers of hatred and division.
“We recognise the constitutional rights of people like Chiefs Edwin Clark, Ayo Adebanjo and John Nwodo who are leaders in their own right, but they should not allow the bitterness of backing the losing horse in the election to becloud their paternal instincts.
“The nation’s unity should be paramount at this time and if there are wounds that needed to be healed after a bitter political campaign, this is the time for it, not for sabre-rattling.
“They have a right to support Atiku Abubakar to press on with his election petition but they should also respect the right of the majority of Nigerians who are satisfied with the progress the country is making under President Buhari, and who voted for continuity”.