Atiku To APC: Your Defence At Tribunal, Pedestrian, Does Not Worth Replying - THE DAILY CRUCIBLE



Saturday, April 13, 2019

Atiku To APC: Your Defence At Tribunal, Pedestrian, Does Not Worth Replying

The Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2019 elections, Alh. Atiku Abubakar,  on Saturday said the All Progressives Congress (APC) does not worth replying  after the party  claimed he wasn’t born Nigerian.

The APC had claimed that Abubakar was not born a Nigerian, and following from this,  the former Vice -President was ineligible to run for the last presidential election in the country.

 The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) declared President Muhammadu Buhari, candidate of the APC, winner of the election having polled 15,191,847 votes to floor his closest rival, Atiku, who garnered 11,262,978 votes.

Not satisfied with the outcome, Atiku and the PDP approached the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal with a 139-page document, challenging the victory of President Buhari, and claiming also that he polled a total of 18,356,732 votes while Buhari scored 16,741,430.

At the last hearing during the Tribunal's proceeding,  APC asked the Panel to dismiss Atiku's  petition, arguing that the PDP candidate lacked  competence to contest the election.

Anchoring its argument on Section 131(a) of the Constitution which stipulates that a person must be a citizen of Nigeria by birth to be eligible to vie for the office of the President.

APC told the Tribunal that "Atiku is not a citizen of Nigeria by birth and ought not to have even been allowed in the first place to contest the election."

But in a statement on Saturday by Paul Ibe, Atiku's  Media Aide,  the Waziri Adamawa dismissed the ruling party's position as a “ridiculous defence" and goes to show to Nigerians, the "type of characters in the APC and its government, whose legitimacy runs out on May 29, 2019.”

The statement reads: " The former Vice President based his case on facts and statistical evidence and challenged both the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the APC, to disprove his factual submissions. 

“The fact that the APC chose to base its defence on the ridiculous assertion that the Waziri Adamawa is not a Nigerian should show to Nigerians the type of characters we have in the APC and its government, whose legitimacy runs out on May 29, 2019. 

“The position of the APC is so pedestrian and shows such straw clutching desperation on their part, that I shall not dignify it with an answer. Our lawyers would, of course, do the needful in court. "But the point I want to draw the attention of Nigerians to is that both the APC and its candidate have by this infantile logic admitted to the fact that they trampled on the will of Nigerians and that their only defence is to attempt an unconstitutional redefinition of the term ‘Nigerian’.

“I am, however, confident in the Nigerian judiciary, as well as in the Nigerian people. I trust that the Tribunal will treat such a claim with the contempt it deserves. We must maintain our fidelity to the rule of law and to our fountain of origin, the 1999 Nigerian Constitution (as amended).

“Atiku Abubakar has served our nation diligently in various capacities, form the civil service, where he rose through merit, to the top of his chosen field, to public service, where, by the grace of Hod, he was the Vice President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

“Moreover, he has committed his assets and talents to developing our nation through the provision of tens of thousands of direct jobs and hundreds of thousands of indirect jobs.”

Jane Okafor, Abuja

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