Atiku not withdrawing petition filed against Tinubu, others – PDP

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*Tinubu, Atiku

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has denied reports that its presidential candidate, Mr. Atiku Abubakar, has withdrawn his petition against the February 25 election. 

In a statement by its spokesman, Mr. Debo Ologunagba, the party said it was shocked by “mischievous report claiming that PDP and its presidential candidate, Atiku, have withdrawn the petition filed against INEC, APC and Tinubu at the Presidential Election Tribunal.”

“On Monday, March 13, the legal team of Atiku, led by J.K Gadzama (SAN) was in court to move a motion ex parte, seeking orders directing INEC to allow us observe/participate in the process of sorting out the ballot papers used for the presidential, Senatorial and House of Representatives elections conducted on February 25, across the country.

“On Tuesday, March 14, our legal team had a conference meeting with the legal team of INEC, and the Commission gave its assurance to cooperate with our team during the inspection and sorting of ballot papers, and to provide election materials needed to file our petition.

“On Wednesday, March 15, our legal team returned to court to inform the court of the resolution reached with INEC and formally discontinued the Motion on Notice,” the party wrote.

Atiku further lambasted the presidential campaign council of the ruling APC for shopping for endorsements and begging United States President, Joe Biden, to call to congratulate Tinubu.

Recall that the council’s director of new media, Mr. Femi Fani-Kayode, had taken to his twitter handle to say that although the U.S. State Department had congratulated Tinubu, there was a need for Biden to add his voice as both the U.S. and Nigeria shared a historic relationship.

“Yes, the American State Department and the American Ambassador to Nigeria both congratulated Asiwaju. For this, we are eternally grateful, and it reflects a measure of respect. However, it’s time for Joe (Biden) to pick up the phone and add his voice. We are a big nation: we deserve no less,” Fani-Kayode tweeted.

Responding in a statement, however, Atiku’s special assistant on public communication, Mr. Phrank Shaibu, said Fani-Kayode’s remarks were evidence of desperation.

Shaibu described Fani-Kayode’s action as appalling, even as he called on Tinubu and his team to stop forcing foreign countries to recognise the “sham election conducted by INEC.”

“After being the beneficiary of the worst and most fraudulent election in the history of Nigeria, Tinubu and his ilk are now running from pillar to post, begging Western powers to recognise Tinubu. This is the height of desperation,” he said.

Atiku’s aide advised Tinubu’s campaign team to save their strength for the legal challenge in the coming weeks rather than beg the US preesident to recognise his tainted mandate.

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