Atiku, Okowa

By Bashir Bello

KANO Ahead of the 2023 general elections, Delta State governor and Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, vice presidential candidate, Ifeanyi Okowa, has said former Vice President Atiku Abubakar will not be a dictator if elected president.

Okowa stated this while speaking with newsmen in Kano on the sideline of the event to receive ex- two-term governor of the state, Senator Ibrahim Shekarau back to the party.

He described Atiku as a man who is calm and who will accommodate peoples’ views.
Okowa also said his principal would run an inclusive government.

He said Atiku has the wealth of experience and contacts to make the country work again.

According to him, “in a distorted situation that we have in this country, who best fits for the position of the presidency? Somebody who has the capacity, the experience, the level of calmness, wisdom and the reach out across the country to be able to gather a team of people together on the table to talk to each other. And then, from day one, he is able to start proffering solutions and getting the buy of people to be able to start rebuilding the foundation and move this nation again.

“Many of them, who are talking cannot fit into it because you could have some level of experience but when you are put into a situation where you have a lot of challenges, you get confused if you don’t have relevant experience.

“I have had to speak once and there some people did attack me. I did not say people do not have experience, I said do not have enough experience to deal with Nigeria of today.

“The Nigeria of today, requires somebody who has a wide level of experience, capacity, and that personal dominion to be able to handle issues in such a way that we can truly trust him to take us on this path. I see only Atiku Abubakar amongst all of them.

“In 1999, they came into power we have issues, though the issues appear to be worse now. There was no doubt, that we had issues of insecurity, and a poor economy then but things appear to be going even worst than they were as at then. But the question is, that experience is very relevant and it is going to help. Contacts made at that time are relevant and going to help.

“But the greatest thing that goes for him is that he is one person that is known and can reach out to people across the 36 states for this nation. And I believe he is one man that has that level of calmness, you need it to be able to accommodate people’s views and to be inclusive in governance. It is not going to look for a dictator. There are some of them who may not be dictators. But the question is whether they will be consumed in that office because of the circumstances of the times. So when you talk about people like Peter Obi, he has some relevant experience but how deep is the experience?” he said.

On the issues surrounding his emergence as the running mate, he said the issue will soon be brought to an end and resolved amicably.

“Like I did said, my emergence and the cries about it, is all politics and competition. So many of us were eminently qualified but I happened to be chosen. And I think it is God’s grace.

“Secondly, I’m in touch with all my colleagues in South-South. As a party and family, we are all talking with Governor Wike. And the process is being led by our Presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar because he is the leader. I believe that sooner than later we will be able to have the issue resolved. Because I don’t think the issues are much. The issue is not about the Vice President seat at the moment because that is a settled matter. I believe that there are few other questions that need to be answered. It is a normal process. It is part of politics. There are reassurances that will need to be made. I believe that is on the table and being discussed. We are working hard to get it resolved and get a lot of people back into our fold,” Okowa said.

On the chances of the party in the forthcoming general elections, Okowa maintained that, “in the South East, it will obviously be an issue for us because of the sentiments that comes in. But I know that the PDP has stronghold in the South East. And I know that the contest in the South East is between the PDP and LP obviously. We would wish he was not in the race but since he is in the race, it is going to be real competition between the two parties (PDP and LP, not the APC) in the South East,” he said.

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