Nigerians in the United Kingdom said yesterday that they are solidly behind the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, because he represents a new generation of leadership necessary to take the country out of poverty and backwardness.
The Coordinator of Atiku Campaign Organisation in the UK, Dr. Tony Chidi, in a statement yesterday said its members were already in Nigeria to mobilise their unflinching support for Atiku, saying there was no reason to compare Atiku to President Muhammadu Buhari, who he said had failed in the last four years to make any meaningful impact on any aspect of the nation’s economy.
The group rated the former vice president high on many key areas of leadership and asked Nigerians to give massive support to him on Saturday.
“Atiku has demonstrated great capacity, capability and ability in both public and private life far above all who are contesting to be president of Nigeria in 2019. Having been there for eight fruitful years, he understands the system better than the incumbent who has demonstrated gross incompetency and all others who currently aspire to the presidency.
‘’As vice president the economy and other substructures were under his watch and they all performed excellently. Nigerians can attest to the fact that Turaki is highly detribalised and would as it was, offer equal opportunities to Nigerians, irrespective of tribe, religion, culture or political leanings unlike Buhari who is so clannish and myopic. Above all, Atiku is a quintessential democrat whose belief in the Rule of Law and resilience in 2nd last tenure as vice president stabilised our democracy’’, the UK group stated.
The group added that whereas Atiku can be said to possess the essential qualities that can promote peace, mutual understanding and coexistence, harmony and progress of the nation the same cannot be said of Buhari “who has almost succeeded in tearing Nigeria apart from his unguarded utterances and actions that betray his morbid contempt or outright hatred for ethnic groups and religions.”
The group added, “The PDP presidential candidate is a core civilian whereas and possesses sound education and wide exposure in different spheres of life while his rival, Buhari is a core combatant soldier who has not been able to adapt himself to civilian lifestyle nearly four decades after retiring from the army with only school certificate as his highest certificate.
“We also note with satisfaction that Atiku is vibrant and creative while it is evident that Buhari leads a dull, boring life deficient in personal initiatives and development. A successful technocrat and entrepreneur, Turaki’s track records in public service and business stands him out as one whose abilities in bringing back Nigeria’s glory are not doubtful, having succeeded in creating wealth and employment.
“Overall, we wish to draw attention to the fact that Nigeria is a very complex nation and anyone who intends to succeed in the apex position of leadership such as the presidency of the country must blend into these complexities, build cohesion among the component nationalities, religious socio-political leanings and be seen to not clearly pandering to ethnic and religious whims and sentiments.’’
The group urged Nigerians to back Atiku because as a liberal democrat, he is also poised to decentralize the economy and encourage devolution of power which would hinge on restructuring and fiscal federalism.