Atiku Abubakar, a presidential aspirant seeking to contest on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has berated the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the conduct of the Osun governorship election.
In a statement entitled: ‘The Triumph of Tyranny is Only Temporal’, which he released in Abuja on Friday, the former Vice-President described the result declared by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as a “demonstration of tyranny”.
He emphasised the reports of voter intimidation and “outright suppression of voting in PDP strongholds”, stating that the announcement of Gboyega Oyetola, the APC Osun governorship candidate, as the winner of the election is “a travesty of justice”.
The statement read: “The result just declared today in Osun by the Independent National Electoral Commission in favour of the All Progressives Congress and its candidate is a travesty of justice. That was not democracy. That was a demonstration of tyranny.
“The victory of the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Senator Ademola Adeleke, was firmly established last week on Saturday the 22nd of September, 2018.
“This so-called victory of the APC is not a democratic victory. Observers, both foreign and domestic, reported the brazen intimidation of voters and outright suppression of voting in PDP strongholds with even PDP agents physically prevented from being at the polling units.
“These actions showed to the whole world that this unnecessary rerun, in polling units cancelled or voided by the INEC, was nothing more than a red herring, to distract attention and gain time, while the ruling party perfected strategies to pull a fast one on the electorate, as it has done today.”
He restated his commitment to standing by Ademola Adeleke, candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), in whatever decision he took to challenge the election result.
“I wish to say to Senator Ademola Adeleke and the good people of Osun State that I stand with you today and tomorrow in your time of need. I will not be presumptuous to tell you what to do. But what I can tell you is that whatever you choose to do, I will be with you both in word and in action.
Atiku also called on the international community, “not to stand idly by while democracy is being trampled upon”.
He continued: “Nigeria is a very unique nation. We are very strategic to Africa in terms of population and location. A destabilised Nigeria will destabilise Africa and this must never be allowed to happen. Thus, the international community must intervene to ensure that what happened in Osun must be investigated, reversed and prevented from spilling over to other gubernatorial, legislative and national elections.
“Finally, I call on Nigerians to be on guard. The APC has shown its hand. It is the leprous hand of a tyrant. Therefore we must be alert in future elections, for as Thomas Paine said ‘eternal vigilance is the price of liberty’.”