Presidential election: Group backs Atiku’s decision to challenge result in court


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Mr Dickson Iroegbu, the spokesperson of a political pressure group, the Better Nigeria Group (BNG), says the group supports the decision of Atiku Abubakar, the defeated PDP presidential candidate, to challenge the outcome of the Feb. 23 presidential election in court.

Iroegbu disclosed this while addressing newsmen on Monday in Abuja.

He said the group’s support was taken following hours of deliberation and consultation with stakeholders and sampling of opinions of Nigerians on the election.

Iroegbu said that the decision of Abubakar to go to court was not just about him but for Nigerians who voted for him in the election.

He said that the alleged irregularities, if allowed to stand unchallenged, would affect the country’s democracy.

“We therefore wish to support the candidate of the PDP, Atiku Abubakar, to immediately resort to approach the court for redress as this will strengthen our democracy.

“This is in a bid to claim the mandate which the people overwhelmingly gave to him through the ballot box.

“We frown seriously at the perceived contemplation that going to court means reneging on the peace accord.

“We understand that the courts are a part of a democratic process and reaching out to them for perceived grievances does not in any way mean war.

“It is important that the PDP candidate realises and consistently keeps in his memory that it is not about him, but those who have given him the mandate.

“While we understand that he may be under tremendous pressure not to approach the court, we want to remind him that anything short of that shall be tantamount to abandonment of the people’s mandate and shall be a huge disappointment.

“There really could not be true peace in the face of so much injustice. To ask for justice so that there may be peace, was only a short term measure.

“This could be likened to dressing a dirty wound. It will never heal.

“The possible long term impact of allowing this to stay unchallenged, is so huge that the country may never recover from its impact,” he said.

Iroegbu called on the judiciary to consider the case on its merit, by the time it would be eventually filed, saying the people shall be watching keenly as the events unfold.

He said that the destiny and future of Nigeria were now in the hands of the judiciary.

Iruegbu condemned the death of innocent citizens on the election day in the course of performing their basic civic responsibility.

“We call on all stakeholders of project Nigeria to keep faith and rise to the occasion to defend our democracy and the processes that sustain it.”

Atiku, with more than 11 million votes,  suffered a crushing defeat in the hands of APC Presidential candidate, Muhammadu Buhari who polled more than 15 million votes on Feb. 23 nationwide.

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