A political pressure group, Northern Youths Voters Forum (NYVF), has chided constitutional lawyer and South-south leader, Prof Itse Sagay, for an uncomplimentary statement credited to him against former Vice President and chieftain of All Progressives Congress (APC), Atiku Abubakar.
A statement signed by the Coordinator of the group, Comrade Idris Ibrahim, in Kaduna yesterday described the statement by Sagay criticizing the defection of Atiku from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to APC, as an act etched in political jobbery, and very debasing of the status of a supposed elder statesman.
“It is a known fact that Professor Sagay is an apologist of the incumbent administration. While no one can take away from the learned Professor his rights to political leanings, his attempt to disparage the character of a former Vice President of Nigeria is utterly disrespectful and comes short of the kind of decency and decorum expected of a gentleman nonetheless an elder statesman.
“For the umpteenth time, Atiku Abubakar has explained the reason for his defection from the PDP to the APC. And the reason is understood and quite acceptable to a vast majority of Nigerians. It is the same reason why majority of other Nigerians are dissatisfied with the ruling party. The PDP has transmuted from a ruling party to a bullying party and several efforts to rescue the party from the stranglehold of impostors have stubbornly refused to yield positive results.
“How many times do the likes of Sagay need be told that Nigerians are tired of the way the PDP is being run and the way the government sponsored by the party is running Nigeria? If Sagay is satisfied that the PDP has turned governance in Nigeria into elite profiteering, Atiku is not comfortable with that. Hence, his decision to move on to a political party that accommodates his ideas about good governance.
“If partisanship in a democracy is supposed to be taken as a market place of ideas about good governance, then it is surprising that Sagay, who is supposed to be a constitutional lawyer, would write off the democratic decision of an individual who chose to apply his rights of political association.
“Obviously, Sagay has a bad motive to his commentary on Atiku. His aim is to work the script of decapitation by some politicians who are jittery of Atiku’s rising popularity among the Nigerian youths as the 2015 election draws nearer.
“But the message for Sagay and his sponsors is that no one can stop an idea which time has come. The idea of voting out the inept and very corrupt government of the PDP is not negotiable and let no one crucify Atiku for saying that he will lead the vanguard of stamping out the PDP through the ballot box.
“Atiku has breached no law for choosing to defect to the APC and if Sagay is to live by his billing as a constitutional lawyer, we demand that he does the needful by publicly apologizing to the former vice-president for his odious commentary about him,” Comrade Ibrahim said.