2023 : I’ll Support Atiku Abubakar…..Gov Ortom
The Governor of Benue State, Samuel Ortom, has said that he is not against the position of the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar, on the issues that transpired at the party’s presidential primary and the selection of a running mate, adding that Atiku is his presidential candidate.
Atiku had after announcing Okowa as his running mate clarified that he picked the Governor of Delta State, Ifeanyi Okowa because he (Okowa) had the qualities to be a President, adding that he “is a President-in-waiting.”
He said, “In arriving at the decision, I held wide consultations with various stakeholders in our party including our governors, the national working committee, board of trustees, and other leaders to seek their inputs and their wisdom.”
“In these consultations, I made clear that my running mate would have the potential to succeed me at a moment’s notice, that is, a president-in-waiting.
Also, speaking in an exclusive interview aired on Friday on Arise TV, Atiku said he picked who could deliver over the Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike.
He noted that he did not reject Wike as a running mate, but only picked who could deliver on his policies out of the three options presented to him by the committee chaired by Ortom himself.
Atiku said, “I didn’t reject Wike, I picked who can deliver. Wike is brilliant and tenacious. Going by history, I picked an Igbo as running mate in 2007, in 2019. I still picked an Igbo as running mate for 2023.
“The committee that presented the three nominees was chaired by the Governor of Benue State, Samuel Ortom. They recommended three people, so I picked one. People should be fair to me and state the facts.” On the possibility of resolving issues with Wike, Atiku said the party was talking to Wike.
“We are reaching out to Wike and we are talking with him and I believe very soon we will find a reconciliation. In fact, very soon, because we are talking to him. We are talking to his governor colleagues. I am very optimistic we are going to resolve our internal crisis and move on.”
He added, “I have contested this presidency a couple of times and I don’t try to blame anybody, I accept the outcome or go to court,” Atiku said. The position of Atiku had generated reactions within the PDP camp and in the public.
Reacting on Monday, Ortom said via his Twitter handle, “I will not contradict @atiku on what he said. He is my candidate and I am behind him. Whatever happened in the course of the primary and nomination of the presidential running mate is now a thing of the past. The PDP is a family, and we will always settle our matters in-house.”
‘it’s time to decide’- LP presidential candidate, Peter Obi
Presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi, has told Nigerians that it is time to make up their minds on whom to cast their votes for.
Obi, in tweets on Monday morning, said those sitting on the fence need to decide now who will lead them and not waste the opportunity.
Adding that the “elders” have failed us, the LP candidate said, “Those of us born after independence must now be given the opportunity to reshape the destiny of this nation.
“We are down the stretch with 12 days to go. I have a message for Nigerians, especially those that are sitting on the fence; It is DECISION TIME.Shot During
“Every nation has significant moments in their history –when a situation arises, which requires that nation to take specific steps that would mark her turning point. Nigeria is at that historical junction
“How we have done as a nation is no longer in debate. We have done poorly due to bad leadership. We must now seize this moment. We must save Nigeria now or never.
“Twelve days from now we will be called upon to make very hard choices. It won’t be about tribe or religion; it won’t be about traditional sentiments of my turn. It will be about national Interest.”
Tinubu will emerge President with our support – North West APC chair, Lukman
The National Vice Chairman (North-West) of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Salihu Moh. Lukman, has expressed confidence that the party’s presidential candidate, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, will win this year’s election.
According to him, the support shown by people during the APC presidential campaign rally in the North-West indicated the party’s success in the region and victory in the coming elections.
Lukman pointed out that the North West has always been the determining factor for presidential candidates to win elections in the country.
A statement issued on Sunday by Lukman explained that Kebbi State APC Presidential Rally on Saturday, February 11, 2023, concluded the phase of the APC presidential campaign rallies in all the seven states of the North-West.
He explained, “We want to thank all our people and re-affirm the commitment of our party, our leaders and all our candidates to continue to provide honest, sincere and responsive leadership. In particular, we want to thank and congratulate all our party leadership at levels in the North-West Zone for the hard work and maintaining a united front throughout this phase of the campaign. We want to also commend and appreciate all our party members and supporters for coming out in mass to all campaign rallies.”
Why Elections Will Not Hold In 240 Polling Units – INEC
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said that election will not hold in 240 polling units across the country, barely 12 days to the general election,
The nation’s electoral body noted that the 240 polling units, which are without registered voters, cut across 28 States of the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
The chairman of INEC, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, who disclosed this at a meeting with Political Parties in Abuja on Monday, explained that no new registrant chose the polling units and no voter indicated interest to transfer their registration to them during the last Continuous Voter Registration (CVR), mainly for security reasons.
According to him, “There are 240 polling units without registered voters spread across 28 States and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
“They range from one polling unit to 12 polling units in each State and the FCT, except Taraba and Imo States with 34 and 38 polling units respectively.
“No new registrants chose the polling units and no voters indicated interest to transfer to them during the last Continuous Voter Registration (CVR), mainly for security reasons. This means that no elections will hold in these polling units.”
He recalled that in 2021, with the support of parties and other critical stakeholders, the Commission successfully expanded voter access to polling units 25 years after the last delimitation exercise in 1996.
Buying PVCs Won’t Help Any Politician – INEC
Consequently, he said the number of polling units increased from 119,973 to the current figure of 176,846.
“At previous meetings, we also briefed you on our efforts to redistribute voters to the polling units to avoid the congestion that made voting cumbersome in many of them nationwide.
“This requires the redistribution of voters to new polling units in proximate locations. Where they are separated by distance, this must be done after consultation with the voters. This has been done by our State offices nationwide,” he said.
He said in its avowed commitment to transparency, the Commission was making available to Nigerians a comprehensive list of the polling units by name, code number, and their locations by State, Local Government and Registration Area.
With this development, he said the number of polling units where elections will hold nationwide on 25th February 2023 and 11th March 2023 is now 176,606.
“Hard copies of the list are included in your folders for this meeting. Above all, Nigerians deserve the right to know the locations of these polling units. Accordingly, the soft copy of the list has been uploaded to our website and social media platforms for public information and guidance.
“Closely related to the distribution of voters is the identification of polling units. From the feedback we received from our officials and accredited observers following the recent nationwide mock accreditation using the BVAS, it is clear that some voters could not easily identify their polling units.
“This should not happen on election day. Consequently, the Commission is advising voters to confirm the locations of their polling units through a dedicated portal on our website. In addition, all voters who have been assigned to new polling units will receive text messages from the Commission indicating their polling units.
“We have also compiled the register of such voters and our State offices will give it wide publicity, especially for those who may not have provided their telephone numbers during voter registration or those whose numbers may have changed,” he added.
Speaking further, he said voters can locate and confirm their polling units before election day by sending a regular text or WhatsApp message to a dedicated telephone number.
He said details of the simple procedure will be uploaded to INEC social media platforms shortly.
“As you are already aware, we have less than two weeks to the 2023 General Election. The Commission is finalising the issuance of 1,642,386 identification tags for the Polling and Collation Agents nominated by the 18 political parties made up of 1,574,301 Polling Agents and 68,085 Collation Agents.
“I urge the Chairmen and leaders of political parties to ensure that only agents accredited by the Commission and wearing the correct identification tags appear at polling units and collation centres during elections.
“A situation where two or more agents claim to represent a political party, resulting in commotion at polling units or collation centres, is unacceptable. Only Identification tags issued by the Commission will be recognised on election day and violators are liable to arrest and prosecution for impersonation.
“Turning to the ongoing electioneering campaigns, the Commission is concerned about violent attacks on supporters of political parties across the board, resulting in the loss of life in some cases. Let me once again appeal to Chairman and leaders of political parties to continue to call your candidates and supporters to order,” he said.
On his part, IPAC national chairman, Engr. Yabagi Yusuf Sani, reiterated the continued commitment of IPAC to the long-standing cooperation and mutually beneficial relationship between the IPAC and INEC.
He also reaffirmed the confidence of IPAC in the leadership of INEC for its consistent demonstration of diligence, uncommon zeal, and patriotism in the pursuit of the agency’s statutory mandate.
He said at it has always been in the past, IPAC and INEC will be coming away from the meeting more prepared to face the onerous historical challenge of conducting credible, transparent, and acceptable elections in 2023.
“On the basis of our evaluation that INEC has been well on track, the leadership of IPAC additionally wishes to use this occasion to commend, the efforts of INEC in confronting the extraordinary environmental challenges occasioned by naira redesign and fuel scarcity through Mr. Chairman’s visit to the relevant agencies
“Usually, Siamese twins needed to be in constant agreement to enable them to live together harmoniously. Also, it is said that a case that is discussed does not usually cause trouble.
“It is on this philosophical note that I want to thank INEC and her Commissioners for constantly calling us to rub minds together because of the Nigerian political project.
“By what we hear and read in the news, your mock accreditation exercise was a success. That is very encouraging. As we know, a mock examination cannot be taken to be the real examination whose coverage is wider and complex.
“So far, the BVAS that were used were reported to have performed perfectly. We are encouraged by this and also wish to appreciate INEC while expecting them to keep the flag of perfection flying,” he stated.
Similarly, he said the Electoral Institute conducted a train-the-trainer workshop for polling agents/collation officers recently.
He said the move is commendable but the Parties are trying to meet the challenges of lean resources to cascade the training down to other critical levels.
“The 2023 general elections seemingly will be a watershed in the history of elections in Nigeria. Today, the tide has changed, because an unknown Party could pull a surprise to the greatest chagrin of all. From this point of view, it is necessary to advise INEC to keep its date with history which must not be wasted.
“INEC should create a golden niche for herself especially the Chairman who has become the child of history, Nigerians are watching, the international community is watching and the Parties are palpitating: I, therefore call on all Nigerians of good conscience to take credible results of the election the way it is.
“At worse. Parties should resort to the law court for adjudication Today it is an abhorrence and crudity if not savagery to see States Governors denying campaign venues to political parties other than their own. This is crude, primitive, and uncivilized.”
He also admonished party leaders that have observed that the elections are conducted free, fair, and credible, the result should be accepted for the love of our country.
“Mr. Chairman, under no circumstances should this election be postponed! Having noted this, I wish to congratulate all the Parties for patting up the healthy campaigns while thanking INEC with great expectations to deliver a credible election,” he added
FOLLOW US ON TWITTER