The National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Dr Iyorchia Ayu, has vowed that the party will not accept harvest of votes from areas that are inaccessible in the country as, according to him, was done in the 2019 elections.
He spoke in Abuja on Friday as the presidential candidate of the party, Atiku Abubakar, commissioned the newly revamped Peoples Democratic Institute (PDI), the think-tank arm of the main opposition party.
Ayu said the party must focus on taking power from the All Progressives Congress (APC) to begin the work of restoring the country which he said was truncated in 2015.
While thanking party members and calling for cooperation and unity, he also advised President Muhammadu Buhari to stick to his word of ensuring the conduct of free, fair and credible exercise next year.
The party boss stated: “I use this opportunity to also thank party members across the country for their continued support and prayers. And we further sue for cooperation and unity of purpose. We are stronger together.
“Our focus must remain on retaking power from the ruling APC next February so we can commence the restoration work which was truncated in 2015.
“The PDP calls on President Muhammadu Buhari to keep his word of ensuring that the 2023 elections are free, fair, transparent and credible. Both the presidency and the APC must not intimidate INEC or its functionaries in any way: let every vote count.
“The party maintains that we will not accept the questionable harvests of votes from inaccessible areas as happened in previous elections under the APC.”
Ayu said the commissioning of PDI marked another turning point in PDP’s fortunes as he said the renewed hope for a better Nigeria was being midwifed by “salient milestones that PDP is making in the rebirth of the party and its return to its winning ways.”
He added: “The party is again preparing itself adequately and shall hit the ground running, when, by the grace of God and the votes of Nigerians, PDP returns to power next year.
“While the others are utterly confused about how, where or when to even begin their campaigns, PDP is already preparing for governance. Our Presidential candidate, His Excellency Atiku Abubakar, has already exhibited his intellectual preparedness in his publications that are already in the public space for everyone to access and scrutinize.
“It is not an accident of history that he commissioned the Institute at its inauguration in year 2000 and, is today, recommissioning it in preparation for the task ahead, Post-May 29, 2023.
“His Excellency is not someone who acts on whims or impulse. He works with thoroughly developed ideas and his love for the Institute had been a pillar of support to it when it flourished.”.
Ayu stated that the PDP will not waste six months in the Presidential Villa thinking of what do with power as Atiku would hit the ground running if elected.
He explained that although the party has a robust package for making Nigeria workable again, the PDI has been revamped and repositioned to provide research data “that will help President Atiku to unlock our national potentials, secure the country, energize our productive sectors, stimulate wealth creation, empower youths and women, create jobs, revitalize agriculture, stabilize the educational sector and, altogether, be an alert and effective commander-in-chief.”
He acknowledged the special support of party faithful, especially Governor Makinde of Oyo state, saying: :It is largely because of him that we are here today.”
Ayu renewed the PDP’s call on the international community, especially the US, European Union, the Commonwealth and the African Union to sustain their interest in the democratic project in Nigeria through diplomatic pressures, political contacts and large, high-calibre observer missions.
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