….I offered to step down for Buhari
BY EMMAN OVUAKPORIE
Presidential aspirant of the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, Mallam Nuhu Ahmed Ribadu Thursday sent a clear signal to all aspirants that he is still a contender in Saturday’s presidential race.
At a press briefing, Ribadu in a speech titled: ‘Farewell to nostalgia’ said “I am still running as Presidential candidate of the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, and my running mate is Fola Adeola. Please ignore any attempt to manipulate the outcome of this election by whatever means especially through viral text messaging disinformation campaign.”
Also, he explained that he offered to step down during the alliance talks but the other main opposition party, Congress for Progressive Change, CPC refused to bulge.
This is however history as the ACN had immediately gone back to the drawing board to re-strategise as to how to humble the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP from Aso Villa come April 16.
He however said” in the next 48 hours, the destiny of our country will change. We would be electing the next president of our beloved country, and with that act, we would be announcing our preparedness to march into a new future.”
“My message to all my fellow compatriots today is that we vote wisely, that we act smartly, in the effort to save our democracy and our country, and set the path to a new beginning of greatness, achievement, and prosperity”.
“We, as a nation, are today in the mid section of our country’s century, but fifty years of independence has not been the cheering news of achievement and fulfillment everyone here would have hoped for. In the midst of opulence and unspeakable wealth, our story and our journey of failure, of squalor and despair, remain one of the most ironic narratives in the history of nation building.”
“But this is not a session for nostalgia or for indulging on the pains of the past, but a moment for decision. A decision that will usher in a new Nigerian in which people want to live in peace, and harmony with one another with good healthcare, good education for our children, job opportunities, security of life and property, and above all a humble, responsive, and accountable government. It is that simple.”
“I want to start therefore with a deep statement of gratitude and appreciation for the opportunity of a lifetime to be the missioner of the message of change and hope that our people are so badly yearning for. A transparent and accountable government is critical to attaining these simple goals but fundamentally, a transparent electoral administration is the foundation for all of it.
“The history of elections in Nigeria reveals that electoral malpractices are the most formidable hurdle that always stood against electing a truly representative and responsible government.
In last week’s National Assembly election, the same challenge started raring its ugly head again and the main perpetrators are the same gifted captains in the art of election rigging and manipulation. They are roaming the streets about now, getting set for action, and if they did it last week, we would all be naïve to imagine that they would yield on this criminal and unpatriotic acts and go on vacation this coming Saturday”.
“Ladies and Gentlemen, it is for this reason that I want to sound a strong note of caution against tampering with the votes in the coming presidential election, as indeed of the remaining elections.”
My message here and particularly to our young brothers and sisters is to vote wisely. Don’t sell your conscience, don’t sell your votes, and don’t sell your future.
The future we are stepping into is longer that the past we are coming from, and I understand that not all the variables are in the hands of the electorates. I also want to take this opportunity to urge electoral officials and law enforcement agents to fear God, especially at this time, and put the interest of the nation above all considerations.
“Fellow compatriots we have to use this opportunity to make the future address the past of our nation. Opposition politicians understood this challenge and tried hard to forge an alliance to address the problem. Sadly, however, the ego and self-centered world of politicians have made it impossible to forge that type of massive force against the administration of the ruling PDP.”
“The broom revolution of the A.C.N seeks to redress this rot, and I urge you all to stand with me all you Nigerians who believe that a new Nigeria is possible. Vote wisely, vote for A.C.N. Thank you all, the story of our dear country can still be written in gold.”
It would be recalled that attempts made by the AC N to have a merger met a brickwall on Tuesday as the issue of who to run with veteran presidential aspirant Gen. Mohammadu Buhari the presidential flag bearer as his running mate Pastor Tunde Bakare refused to endorse the agreement.