The All Progressives Congress (APC) vice-presidential candidate, Senator Kashim Shettima, has said the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, has no chance in the 2023 general elections.
Speaking in Abuja during the weekend when a support group, ‘APC National Integrity Movement’, visited him, the former governor of Borno State said Atiku does not have support of past governors of his home state of Adamawa, therefore, he cannot challenge the APC candidate, Bola Tinubu, in terms of track record of service delivery, qualitative leadership and capacity for grooming competent administrators
Shettima, who assured that Tinubu will form his cabinet within the first week after his inauguration, if elected as president, described Atiku as a political tourist who comes to Nigeria only when there is an election and returns to Dubai, United Arab Emirates, to relax thereafter.
He said: “Atiku Abubakar is like a father to me and I hold him in high esteem. But he is a political tourist who is only in this country every electoral circle and we are going to retire him back to Dubai to go and relax. In every situation, for people to see your worth, they need to see your output at home. I am from the Northeast; he is from the Northeast.
“Atiku cannot point to three projects that he brought to the Northeast or to Northern Nigeria for the eight years that he served as the vice president. He cannot show us three people that he has mentored.”
He continued, “Is he even in good terms with past governors of Adamawa state? Admiral Nyako is with us. James Ngilari is with us. Asiwaju can boast of Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, he can boast of Babatunde Raji Fashola, he can boast Lai Mohammed, Rauf Aregbesola, Kayode Fayemi, Femi Gbajabiamila, Abiodun Faleke, Joe Igbokwe, Ben Akabueze. I can boast of Babagana Zulum, Senator Abubakar Kyari, Mohammed Ali Ndume, Betara Aliyu and Tahir Mongunu, Zanaib Gimba.”
Shettima described the former Lagos State Governor, Tinubu as the best material for the presidency, saying, “The trajectory of global growth is facing Africa and Nigeria will make or mar that transition. That is why I will rather be a small fish in a big pond than be a big fish in a small pond.
“I supported Asiwaju out of a moral obligation, out of a moral conviction. What we have seen is his opportunity for national collaboration and national cohesion. When the frontlines that divide us were being manipulated for political ends, Asiwaju refused to swallow the pill.”
“Those of us who were in Lagos in 2014 for the Presidential primary of the APC can attest to the fact that without the block support of the south-west, President Muhammadu Buhari would not have emerged as the presidential flag bearer of the APC.
“For God’s sake, ours is a young nation where inclusivity and sense of belonging have been the cardinal work of our national and political intercourse. If power resides in the north for eight years, for God’s sake, it should move,” he added.