In a swift reaction to the All Progressives Congress’ (APC) claim that Atiku Abubakar, presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), is not a Nigerian, the PDP has held that Abubakar’s grandfather is from Sokoto.
The APC had on Friday, April 12, filed a motion at the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal in Abuja by its lead counsel, Lateef Fagbemi, faulting the candidacy of Atiku in the election, claiming that Atiku is a Cameroonian and not a Nigerian.
They therefore stated that the former Vice President’s petition against President Muhammadu Buhari, should be dismissed for lacking in merit.
But, the spokesperson for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Presidential Campaign Council, Mr Segun Sowunmi, on Sunday, said that the claims by the APC that Atiku is not a Nigerian was just part of the acts of the ruling party to distract the former vice president from reclaiming his mandate.
He wondered how APC could come up with such an allegation when Atiku is the Waziri of Adamawa, adding that he was a top Customs officer for more than 20 years before he retired.
Sowumi said “Atiku Abubakar has been the former vice president of this country and I think that when this kind of issues come up, you begin to query who exactly and what exactly is the geographical expression of Nigeria.
“Most Nigerians know a lot about Atiku’s background and everything about the former vice president is that of Nigeria.
“In actual fact, Atiku’s grandfather is from Sokoto.
“Atiku’s grandfather followed his friend to Adamawa, then Gongola, and Atiku’s grandfather gave birth to Atiku’s father there. But it has never been under guesswork that Atiku is a full-fledged bona fide Nigerian”.
“Atiku is a Nigerian; he’s the Waziri of Adamawa. He is former vice president, former governorship candidate and I think that every territory of Nigeria is a Nigerian territory”.
“Atiku is one of the citizens of the country, Nigeria. Atiku has been the former vice president of this country, GCON. When these kinds of issues come up, you even begin to query who exactly and what exactly is the geographical expression of Nigeria.”
He added that the PDP candidate was one of the citizens of the country, stressing that Nigeria has 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory, and Adamawa was one of them.