PDP’s Presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, has accused the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) of unprecedented manipulation and fraud during the presidential and national assembly elections.
He made these allegations during a press conference on Thursday, March 2, 2023, and called on President Muhammadu Buhari to intervene to protect Nigeria’s democracy. Atiku claimed that the electoral commission had “failed woefully” in its duties and that the election was a “rape of democracy.”
He plans to challenge the flawed processes and outcome of the election with the evidence gathered by his lawyers in court, with the hope that the judiciary will restore the credibility of Nigeria’s elections and electoral processes.
During the same press conference, former Vice-President Atiku was asked whether Peter Obi, the Labour Party’s candidate, affected his performance at the poll. Atiku admitted that Obi had taken some of the PDP’s votes in the South-East and South-South regions, but he argued that this alone would not have been enough for Obi to beat him in the election. Atiku pointed out that a presidential candidate needs votes from all over the country, not just in certain regions. Nonetheless, Atiku welcomed the idea of dialogue with Peter Obi on forming an alliance.
However, Atiku also alleged that Peter Obi left the PDP because he was afraid of the party’s governors, who had insisted that one of them must produce the presidential candidate for the 2023 election. Atiku claimed that negotiations for power should be conducted rather than fought for, and he stated that he himself had stood up against the governors.
In summary, Atiku acknowledged that Peter Obi took some of the PDP’s votes, but he argued that this was not the only reason he lost the election. He also invited Obi to form an alliance with the PDP and criticized Obi’s decision to leave the party.