Nigeria’s President-elect, Bola Tinubu has described the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2023 election, Atiku Abubakar, as a consistent serial loser.
Tinubu said this in his response to the petition filed by Atiku and the PDP before the Presidential Election Petition Court (PEPC), in which they are praying to be declared the winner of the presidential election or for the court to order a rerun.
In the response filed on Wednesday night by his team of lawyers led by Chief Wole Olanipekun (SAN), Tinubu said Atiku had always lost the chance to lead the country since 1993, and crisscrossed different political parties, in search of power.
Tinubu asked Atiku not to see his loss at the last election as strange, arguing that it would have been a miracle for the PDP and its candidate to win in view of the crisis rocking the party before and during the election.
He said: “The 1st petitioner (Atiku) has been consistently contesting and losing successive presidential elections in Nigeria since 1993, whether at the party primary election level or at the general election; including 1993, when he lost the Social Democratic Party (SDP) primary election to the late Chief M.K.O Abiola.
”In 2007, Atiku lost the presidential election to the late President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua; and in 2011, when he lost the Peoples Democratic Party presidential primary election to President Goodluck Jonathan; 2015, when he lost the APC primary election to President Muhammadu Buhari; 2019, when he lost the presidential election to President Muhammadu Buhari; and now, 2023, when he has again, lost the presidential election to the 2nd respondent (Tinubu).
It was/is not a surprise and/or not by accident that the electorate rejected the 1st petitioner at the polls of the presidential election held on 25th February, 2023.”
Tinubu also noted that Atiku was without a stable political platform and has lost majority of his key supporters, in view of his habit of jumping from one political party to another.
He equally noted that Atiku’s emergence as PDP’s candidate fueled the crisis in the party, resulting in five of its sitting governors resolving to work against him and ensure he lost.
Tinubu also faulted the competence of Atiku’s petition, describing it as not only frivolous, but an abuse of the process of court, the PDP having earlier filed a suit at the Supreme Court, through some of its governors, demanding the cancellation of the election.
The president-elect argued that the PDP and Atiku cannot maintain two cases on the same issue in different courts at the same time, saying that the PDP through its governors in Adamawa, Akwa-Ibom, Bayelsa, Delta, Edo and Sokoto states filed a suit at the Supreme Court, demanding among others, that the February 25 presidential election be cancelled.
He added: “The plaintiffs attacked INEC for not following its Manual and Regulations in the conduct of the election, and also complained of glitches, which is also the thrust of their petition.
“While the originating summons (in the suit before the Supreme Court) was filed on 28th February, 2023, this petition was filed on 21st March, 2023.
“The petitioners herein, through themselves and/or their proxies filed the originating summons at the Supreme Court, before filing this petition.
“The petitioners are maintaining two processes in respect of the same subject and/or complaint of theirs, against the conduct of the presidential election held on 25th February, 2023.
This latter petition is abusive of the originating summons filed at the Supreme Court and is liable to be dismissed in limine.”
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