Peoples Democratic Party’s presidential candidate for the 2023 general elections, Atiku Abubakar, has solicited the support of his rivals in the opposition party to defeat the ruling All Progressives Congress in next year’s election.
Atiku stated this on Wednesday after he received the party’s Certificate of Return at the PDP National Secretariat at the Wadata Plaza in Abuja.
According to the former Vice-President whose ambition to become Nigeria’s president started about 30 years ago, his main opponent is the APC and not his co-aspirants in Sunday’s presidential primary.
He urged his contenders to join forces with him to eject the APC government led by the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd) in 2023.
Atiku described his victory as “a victory for all of us, for our party and for the vast majority of Nigerians suffering under the misrule of the APC”.
During the PDP presidential primary held at the Moshood Abiola Stadium on Saturday, Atiku polled 371 votes to defeat Rivers State governor, Nyesom Wike, who got 237 votes; a former President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki, 70 votes; the Akwa Ibom State Governor, Emmanuel Udom, 38 votes; the Bauchi State Governor, Bala Mohammed, 20 votes; a former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Anyim Pius Anyim, 14 votes and an ex-President of Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria, Sam Ohuabunwa, one vote.
Premium Politics had earlier reported that delegates were surprised when the Sokoto State Governor, Aminu Tambuwal, who was one of the front runners for the presidential ticket, stepped down and directed his supporters to vote for Atiku as a result of what sources said was due to the intervention of the northern elders, who were pushing for a northern consensus aspirant.
Atiku had since after the contest visited Wike, Saraki, Tambuwal and some other aspirants in their Abuja residences.
On Wednesday, the PDP flag bearer, while receiving his Certificate of Return from the party, said, “My chairman, my dear friends, while I am excited and happy for this opportunity to bear our party’s flag, let us all remember that what just happened is a contest within a family to decide how to put our best foot forward. The main contest is the one to win the Presidency of our country for our Party.
“And it requires the entire PDP family and other supporters and sympathizers. We must pull everyone together. Nobody should be excluded.
“I have already visited some of those who contested against me as a way to lead in that effort to unify the party so that we can face our real opponents, defeat them in the elections and begin the process of rescuing and rebuilding this country.
“The callous and dangerous APC misrule over the past seven years is there for everyone to see.
“However, we should not take their defeat for granted. We must unite and work extremely hard for every single vote in this country.”