Disgruntled pro-Atiku groups want power zoned to south, dismiss Atiku as elitist
Some Pro Atiku groups, under the auspices of Coalition of Concerned Groups on Power Shift to the South and the Need for Younger Candidates to Emerge Come 2023, have told PDP’s most perennial aspirant Atiku Abubakar to forget the thought of running again in 2023.
Power should rotate to the south, the group now insists in an address signed by its leaders National President, Middle Belt Network For Atiku, Luka Pam, and Secretary-General, Middle Belt Network For Atiku, Madaki Yakubu, and National Coordinator, amongst others during a press conference held in Abuja.
“We are in a position to present an unbiased representation of the pulse and mood of the nation,” the statement read.
“Today, in the face of ongoing insurgencies and separatist movements feeding various sentiments that have left the average Nigerian with low morale and uncertainty over the future of the country, it is only fair that there is a power shift to the southern region.
“We make a clear and undiluted call on former Vice President Atiku Abubakar to give second thoughts to his desire to contest for the office of president in the elections again in 2023.”
The groups also noted Atiku’s age, 77, will become a liability, considering the challenges facing Nigerians now.
“Nigeria needs a young and more energetic unifier, who will be able to handle the rigours of being physically present in crises spots to make the physical and psychological statement of government being in charge and committed to finding lasting solutions to our national challenges,” the group said.
“Having been around for decades and served at different levels, up to the highest levels of government as a very influential vice president, we believe Alhaji Atiku Abubakar has done his tour of duty in the front row of national affairs.”
They advised Atiku to take a back seat and play the role of elder statesman, the billings of which he has lived up to.
While the support groups suddenly turned around ay not be unconnected with the perceived betrayal by the former vice president and PDP’s presidential candidate in 2019.
“It’s a clear betrayal of the trust reposed in him as an encapsulation of the sum of their legitimate aspirations and hopes for Nigeria.
“We are equally not blind to the optics of Alhaji Atiku Abubakar’s preferred public association with members of the topmost echelons of the Nigerian elite, showing he has lost touch with the reality of the suffering masses of Nigeria, who are bitten by the current bugs of the economy and the potential drifting of the political ship of state.
“As a professed lover of the east of Nigeria, having even gone as far as taking a wife from that region, we urge Alhaji Atiku to substitute his personal ambition with overt support for a candidate of eastern extraction.
“The time is now if we must save Nigeria, for a younger candidate to take the saddle and take back our country from a particular set of Nigerians who are in their late seventies and eighties.
“The time is now for new thinking to guide Nigeria in the direction that is befitting of 21st-century society, as the giant of Africa and Africa’s largest economy, to play a leadership role in African affairs and in the comity of nations as a whole.
“Our members, in their numbers across the country, are on standby in the various political parties and consulting from outside of the parties to ensure that southeastern presidency is achieved in 2023.
“This demand of ours is not an attempt to malign the character of any individual, but a patriotic call based on the mood and need of the nation.”