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“5% and 97% do not add up to 100%” – 7 takeaways from Atiku’s PDP convention speech

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“5% and 97% do not add up to 100%” – 7 takeaways from Atiku’s PDP convention speech

Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar on Saturday delivered a speech at the PDP national convention in Abuja. even though Atiku is not eligible to vote at the elective convention due to the fact that he only recently defected to the party. 

Below are our takeaways from the speech:

  1. Atiku first shared his beliefs“I believe in one Nigeria where all our people have equal opportunity. I believe in one Nigeria where we all share a common good. This belief inspired me and other compatriots to establish The Peoples Democratic Party on the ideals of one united nation, built on the principles of Justice, Equity and Equal Opportunity.”
  2. Atiku spoke broadly about some of his fights in the past 19 years that he’s been in politics:”I fought against factionalism. I fought for our Nation’s constitution and to prevent tenure elongation. I fought for our party’s constitution – even at the expense of being forced out of the very party that I helped found. For this is the price one must sometimes pay for democracy. However, I never abandoned our founding principles.”
  3. Atiku spoke about why he is proud of the PDP, a party he ditched only three years ago in order to join the APC:”And, today, I am proud to say that I have returned home – home to our party. I am proud that the PDP is the party that successfully took over power from the military in 1999. I am proud that the PDP gave Nigeria her first transition from a ruling party to an opposition party – a transition that is now a model for all of Africa. I am proud that the PDP has an unequalled record of growing our economy for the benefit of all.”
  4. Some APC bashing which the PDP will sharpen as it begins to prepare its message for the 2019 polls. Just as he did in his speech announcing defection to PDP, Atiku placed emphasis on the economic argument: “The APC Nigeria is not working and our people are not working. Let us consider what the APC has achieved versus what they promised at election time: The APC promised us three million new jobs a year; in Government the APC has lost us three million jobs a year. The APC promised us peace and unity; Under the APC Nigeria is now more divided and acrimonious than at any time since the civil war. The APC promised us restructuring; in office the APC denied restructuring. The APC promised a war on corruption but all they have delivered is a war on the opposition, with handouts for their cronies and handcuffs for their opponents.”
  5. He made a selective comparison of the records of the APC and PDP governments: “We, the PDP, achieved a 10-year increase in the life expectancy of our people. We, the PDP, enabled 99 million more of our people to have a mobile phone. We, the PDP helped Nigeria become the largest economy in Africa. In the 16 years that we governed this nation we kept it united, peaceful and prosperous.”
  6. He also landed some subtle blows that were very particular to Pres. Buhari, even attacking Buhari’s patriotism. He made reference to Buhari’s 97% vs 5% comments in which the president said it was normal to favour parts of the country which voted more for him. According to Atiku, “The PDP made mistakes, but we put our nation first. We did not favour only states that voted for us and punish those that did not. We favoured all. And we also know that 5% and 97% do not add up to 100%. We now have an APC government, which continues to blame previous governments and scapegoat people rather than solve problems it was elected to solve.”
  7. What the PDP must do: “We must work to earn the trust of Nigerians again and, if given another chance in Government use it to continue to work to improve the lives of our citizens. We, the PDP, must be the party that is the hope of the common man for the common good of the commonwealth of Nigeria. We, the PDP, must be the party that takes power from the centre and puts it firmly in the hands of the Nigerian people. We, the PDP, must be the party that embodies the Nigerian vision, and ensures that the Nigeria of divisions never, ever happens again.”

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