The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the February 25, 2023 election, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, has flayed the Economist Intelligence Unit’s (EIU) prediction that the presidential election petition tribunal would not cancel the election of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
The former vice president, in a statement, said he had carefully studied the report by the EIU and regretted that it was an, “embarrassment to the think tank body.”
The statement was signed by Atiku’s media aide, Mr. Paul Ibe.
The EIU had predicted that the victory of President Bola Tinubu in the February 25 presidential election would not be overturned by the court.
EIU, which had projected that Tinubu would win the presidential poll, also predicted in its latest report that the presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP), Mr. Peter Obi would emerge a formidable force in 2027.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had declared Tinubu, the presidential candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), as the winner of the last presidential election.
Tinubu defeated 17 other candidates who took part in the election. He scored a total of 8,794,726 votes to emerge victorious.
However, Atiku stated: “What is also obvious in the report is that it is a merchant purchased by the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) to confuse the country in an uphill task to defend the sham election of February 25, which only retained the ruling party in office.”
Atiku noted that, “Notwithstanding the preponderance of salient issues raised on the credibility of the so-called election by local and foreign observers, it is disappointing that the EIU would condescend to ballot laundering for the ruling party in the most populous black country.
“While we wish to express our intention to apply cautious restraint in responding to the EIU on this disgraceful outing, let this be considered as a stern warning to the body to respect Nigeria’s democracy and the institution of our judiciary, and that next time, they should be more circumspect before they jump on any trade by barter jaundiced reports about Nigeria.”
Atiku added: “However, to the APC that is going cap in hand begging for legitimacy at all impossible places, we wish to remind them of a popular local proverb that: “he who steals a drum from the palace carries the unenviable burden of where to beat it.”
Atiku stated that a, ”government that goes around to buy anything at sight to award legitimacy unto itself leaves much to the imagination of the people.
“President Tinubu and his team of lawyers had all the opportunity at the court to present his case of legitimacy before the parties closed their cases at the election petition tribunal.
“But rather than explore that opportunity, his lawyers were busy signing counter motions on subpoenas that seek to shed more light on his personal information,” the former vice president added.
The PDP presidential candidate added, “We therefore consider it a breach of due process anything that is being done outside the walls of the court that seeks to make short circuited testimony about the outcome of the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal.”