Tuesday, 17 September 2013

# Africa News # Atiku Abubakar

I Was Betrayed by EFCC, PDP in 2007 – Atiku Abubakar

Culled from DailyTimes Newspaper
Former Vice President of Nigeria, Abubakar Atiku has said the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) among other institutions contributed to his losing the 2007 presidential election.

Among the other institutions the veteran presidential aspirant mentioned in a statement, titled ‘I will never stop fighting for democracy’, were the Petroleum Technology Development Fund, National Council of Privatisation committee and those he referred to as “aggrieved power-mongers”.

Atiku, who contested and lost the presidential elections on the platform of the Action Congress of Nigeria in 2007, lost the PDP primaries in 2011 for a second presidential attempt.

According to him, he knows that he would lose the 2007 presidential election but refused yield advice to back out. Continue...

He said: “It was two nights before the 2007 Presidential Elections, and we were about to lose. It was my first, and only, run in a general election for president, and I knew it would be a heavy loss. Two weeks prior to that evening, two state governors had visited my home to beg me to step aside. There had been rumours the results of the yet-to-be-held elections had already been tabulated and sent to INEC.

“At the time I believed the people of Nigeria would see this as a battle to save the soul of the country, and would judge me fairly. What I did not see coming was one of the best-executed smear campaigns aimed at tarnishing everything I had legitimately worked to achieve in our struggle for democracy.

“The aggrieved power-mongers threw every contrived accusation they could at me, from EFCC, to PTDF, to the NCP committee. And despite constant and total vindication at every turn by our courts, in the end battles are won and lost in the court of public opinion. And despite zero evidence or guilt, these opponents of democracy remain unyielding in their attempts to smear my hard-earned reputation.”

He expressed disappointment that he was betrayed by the commission and party he contributed to their establishment.

He claimed that after losing election, which he referred to as a battle; he still felt he had won “a war to preserve the sanctity of our democratic process.”

He said: “Why did I continue in an election that I knew clearly I was about to lose? It never mattered that from a moment I bought my mother a home as a 14-year-old boy, I was running various businesses to provide for my family. I was orphaned from the political party I helped start, hounded by the very people I helped bring into government, hunted by the EFCC I helped establish with start-up funding, after having been merely a shell agency when it was initially set up. Yet, in the end, the EFCC proved not one case against me.

“We are all products of our history. Mine was formed in the spring of 1995, when our dictator, General Sani Abacha, sentenced my mentor Shehu Musa Yar’Adua to death and former boss Olusegun Obasanjo to life in prison in sham trials. He went so far as to send a hit squad to open fire on my family and me at our home in Kaduna. That was the very night I vowed that when we defeated this military junta, I would never allow another despot sit and rule over the people of Nigeria.”

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