•As Igbo PDP leaders forge unity around candidate
By Chinonso Alozie, Owerri
Peoples Democratic Party, presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar yesterday urged voters to stay back and protect their votes if they do not want to be further impoverished.
Atiku spoke at the Southeast Zonal presidential rally in Owerri where the unity of Igbo political office holders behind his campaign came to the fore.
Among those present at the rally yesterday were Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, chairman of the PDP Governors Forum Governor Dave Umahi, Governor Ifenayi Uwuanyi of Enugu and Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia States.
Igbo political leaders had in the past been alleged to be peeved over the candidate’s disposition to them following his emergence as the party’s flag bearer.
However, yesterday that was buried as the political leaders rallied round the candidate.
Speaking yesterday at the rally which took place at the Dan Anyiam Stadium, Atiku alleged that the All Progressives Congress, APC, was planning to rig the 2019 elections and added that the only way to stop it was for voters to vote and protect their votes. He further added that Nigeria has been made poorer under the APC government.
“APC, is planning to rig the election. Please protect your vote. We have promised to restructure this country. APC, is an evil party. They have turned this country as headquarters of poverty.
“We want the economy to start growing again. We want you to vote PDP at all levels. Let nobody deceive you.”
The Vice Presidential candidate, Mr. Peter Obi also speaking said:
“Southeast will follow Atiku, he is the one to develop Igboland. He has promised us restructuring. He will revamp the economy of Nigeria. Igbo people will vote Atiku Abubakar.”
Senate President Bukola Saraki, on his part said: “We have come here to see that the entire southeast zone is part of the making of Atiku as the next president. Let me tell you, he has the capacity to make Nigeria united. I know that Nigerians are not happy the way it is now. Believe me, Atiku will solve the whole problems.”
The endorsement of the Atiku project from the Igbo political class came with Senator Ekweremadu, the highest political office holder from the region who urged Ndigbo to vote Atiku.
“The time has come we have been waiting for to put this country in order. We have to return PDP, to power to bring back the pride of this country. Atiku will make Nigeria work again.”
Governor Umahi on his part said:
“I want to tell you people that the whole of Southeast is PDP. There is no division. We have come to say thank you to our people who have been supporting PDP. We will vote Atiku. He is the man that understands the work and what Nigerians need.”
Other dignitaries who attended present at the event included the National Chairman of PDP, Uche Secondus, included Atiku’s wife, Dr. Jennifer Atiku Abubakar, and wife of the running mate, Mrs. Margaret Obi among others.