An Abuja-based rights activist, Deji Adeyanju, has charged the 2023 Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, to bow out of politics and mentor young politicians.
He said Atiku’s insistence on contesting for the presidency in 2023 made Bola Tinubu President of Nigeria.
In his new year message, Adeyanju said Atiku’s refusal led to the greed of Labour Party’s Peter Obi, New Nigeria People’s Party’s Rabiu Kwankwaso and FCT Minister, Nyesom Wike paving the way for Tinubu’s victory.
The message reads: “For over three decades, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar’s name has appeared prominently in the Nigerian political lexicon and one cannot deny the fact that he has contributed a great deal in shaping the Nigerian democracy.
“From the aborted third republic down to the recently conducted 2023 general elections, Alhaji Atiku has played one role or the other in Nigerian politics, with varying results. However, it is now time for him to take a bow from politics and serve as a mentor for the younger generation of politicians.
“Keen observers of political issues in Nigeria will attest to the fact that year 2023 was Alhaji Abubakar’s best shot at the Nigerian Presidency. He had everything working in his favour. However, a combination of arrogance, inadequate human relationship, inability to manage the opposition, and several other lesser known factors contributed to his defeat in the polls.
Abubakar was directly responsible for the division in the opposition that saw President Tinubu emerging with the slimmest victory margin in Nigeria’s recent democratic elections. He failed to support Peter or prevail on him to remain in the PDP, he failed to prevail on Kwankwaso to remain in the PDP, he picked unnecessary fight with the G5 PDP governors and invariably lost in woefully in areas that were hitherto traditional PDP bases.
“Had the G5, kwankwaso, Peter Obi and Atiku worked under one platform in the 2023 presidential election, we would have had a different president today. Sadly, that ship has sailed. It is for the aforementioned reasons that Abubakar must drop his intention to run in the 2027 presidential elections. He is not the only politician in Nigerian. He must give way for younger generation of politicians.”
He charged Atiku to leave behind a legacy of uniting the opposition and pushing for a younger politician to be president of Nigeria.
Adeyanju said the former Vice President should assume the role of “Moses and let history be the judge,” adding that the opposition must also find a way to work together to present a united front in 2027 through a younger candidate.