Osita Okechukwu, the director-general of the Voice of Nigeria, blamed former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar for PDP’s failure to win the February 25 presidential election. He said Mr Abubakar was greedy.
Mr Okechukwu, an APC chieftain, said this when he spoke with journalists in Abuja following the presidential election petitions tribunal’s ruling on Wednesday affirming Bola Tinubu’s victory at the poll.
He said although the PDP had bright chances of bouncing back through the 2023 presidential election, the political greed of the party’s candidate, Mr Abubakar, denied the party victory.
“So, it is obvious that when Atiku sacrificed statesmanship on the altar of narrow political ambition, one concluded that he had wittingly or unwittingly fatally wounded the fabric of PDP,” Mr Okechukwu explained. “And, going by the time-worn cliché, a divided house cannot stand. Nigerians should recognise that Atiku, by his greed, denied PDP a possible victory.”
Mr Okechukwu said Mr Abubakar’s failure to be a statesman by supporting his erstwhile running mate Peter Obi or any other southern presidential candidate divided PDP.
“Atiku dealt PDP a huge blow from which it might be difficult to recover,” Mr Okechukwu claimed, dismissing claims President Bola Tinubu was not qualified to run and allegations of irregularities in the election as well as the failure to electronically transmit results in real-time were fatal to the respondents’ case.
“Those intricate webs could have been resolved if Atiku had obeyed the zoning convention supported Peter Obi or any other southern presidential candidate. It could been simply an all-southern bout. The Wike masquerade couldn’t have emerged. That would have meant that the bulk of votes he garnered could have been credited to PDP,” reasoned Mr Okechukwu.
He added, “Atiku divided PDP’s votes irreparably. All the votes Labour Party garnered were from the party’s stronghold, minus votes warehoused by the former vice-president who naively forgot that northern voters are one of the most sophisticated in the country but believed that northern electorate would behave like children in a dormitory waiting for directives on how to vote.”
Mr Okechukwu insisted that “the opposition lost the election that day in 2022 when Atiku Abubakar trampled on the presidential zoning convention, which governed the fourth republic Nigeria and was also embedded in his party’s constitution.”