By Lateef Ibrahim, Abuja
Former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar has assured that he will not defect from the party anymore even if he fails to secure the party’s Presidential ticket for the 2019 general elections.
Rather, Atiku promised that he would continue to discharge his responsibility to the party.
The former vice president and Wazirin Adamawa gave the assurance during his visit to the national secretariat of the PDP, popularly known as Wadata House, in Abuja during which he formally informed the National Working Committee (NWC) of his intention to view for the presidential ticket of the party.
Atiku, who was accompanied by the Director-General of his campaign organization, Otunba Gbenga Daniel among several other party chieftains, similarly pushed for a free, fair, credible and transparent presidential primaries, reasoning that such would boost the party’s chances in the Presidential election.
According to him, “Whether I become the presidential candidate or not, I want to assure you that I will always discharge my obligations to this party.
“If we can sustain the kind of primary that we had in Ekiti, there is no doubt that this party will be on its way to regaining the preeminence in power that we were known for,” Atiku stated.
In his response, national chairman of PDP, Prince Uche Secondus, assured that the party under his watch will ensure free and fair elections.
He added that imposition and impunity were now things of the past in the party.
The PDP National chairman however rated the President Muhammadu Buhari administration low for what it called its poor handling of the anti-corruption war and management of the nation’s economy.
While deriding the administration for clamping down on members of his party, he dared them to come for PDP members saying “we we area ready.”
He said, “The NWC and the National Executive Committee, NEC have vowed to return this party to power in line with the vision of the founding fathers. That is why we rebranded and repositioned to remove every shades of impunity or imposition.
“Our chapters now have more powers devolved to them by the national secretariat and we can assure you of a credible, free and fair primaries. We will do more than we did in Ekiti,” Secondus assured.
Former national chairman of PDP and member of the Atiku Abubakar Presidential Campaign Council, Okwesilieze Nwodo, urged the party to ensure that only the best aspirants emerge as candidates in the party.
He condemned government’s handling of the spates of killings in the land, saying a man like Atiku was what the nation needs to restore hope again.
His words, “Another four years at the point where we are today, this country will cease to exist,”.
Nwodo dismissed allegations against Atiku bordering on corruption.
According to him, anyone with a shred of evidence against the former Vice President should come forward with same, adding that thus far, no one has approached the anti-corruption agencies in that regard.
“People say he is corrupt but he has challenged us to blow the whistle on him. We are waiting for a whistle to be blown. He has never held a position where he can approve monies,” he added.
Atiku was accompanied to the party’s headquarters by the Director General of his campaign council, Otunba Gbenga Daniel, former Police Affairs Minister, Ambassador Maina Waziri among others.