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London meeting: Obi/Datti campaign denies striking deal with Atiku

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London—The media office of the Obi-Datti 2023 Presidential Campaign has debunked the speculation that the presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Mr. Peter Obi, has entered into a ‘political deal’ to support the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar.

The Vanguard reports that the campaign office, in a statement in Abuja, yesterday, described the speculation as the handiwork of propagandists who indulge in distorting facts in the pursuit of imaginary relevance for their paymasters.

The statement read in part, “Rather than strive to contend with the hard sell of their candidates, these mischief makers bandy about misleading accounts of the issue-based messages of our candidates just to score cheap political points and thus distract the discerning public.

“While we understand the frustration of dealing in their hard-to-sell, ‘expired milk’ [apologies to BAT] in a competitive market, the FairPlay rule demands that you don’t associate the good with the bad product. We demand honour even among thieves!

“We know the intention of the spin-doctors in selling an utterly false story that the high-flying Labour Party candidate, Peter Obi, met with his PDP counterpart and reached a deal. Nothing can be further from the truth.”

It further added, “Obi’s foreign trip, its motive, and where and who to meet is already in the public domain; his meeting in the UK with some Nigerian political leaders is visually seen by all.

“But mischievous propagandists prefer to concoct lies in a desperate effort to clean up their candidate.

“We understand why the focus is on the Obi-Datti candidacy; they are easily the front runners in this 2023 race and the tag team has irresistible messages that are resonating with the embattled Nigerian public who are anxious more than ever to reclaim and take back their country.

“The LP candidates are on a divine mission to rescue and rebuild this country and cannot be distracted by any fabrications intended to mislead.

“ If Obi’s mission is to rescue Nigeria from the old order, he ought not be seen working for the changing order.”

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Buhari has reduced insecurity in Nigeria, says Tinubu

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England—The presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, has said that the President Muhammadu Buhari, has reduced the insecurity challenge he met on the ground in 2015.

Punch reports that Tinubu said this during an interview with BBC, which was published on Tuesday.

Questioned about how he would tackle insecurity, considering it has persisted, Tinubu said, “It has reduced. I will defend him.

“Then, 17 local governments and about four states where we had flags of foreign jihadists in Nigeria. That is no more. That is long gone.

“To start chaos is easy. To bring normalcy and redecorate is more difficult. Here we are, Buhari has degraded but not completely eliminated ISWAP.

“They will talk briefly of lethal weapons and ammunitions and technology equipment that could have helped with the clean up of those.

“The West is yet to feel comfortable enough with a Buhari administration to sell us the arms and technology necessary.”

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People want to use me to make money—Tinubu explains why he snubs debates

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London—The presidential candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, has said those inviting him for debates are only trying to use him to make money because he’s a marketable individual.

Channels Television reports that the former governor of Lagos State said this at Chatham House in London on Monday, barely 24 hours after he snubbed a town hall meeting attended by three other candidates in the 2023 presidential race.

Fielding a question from the audience on why he snubbed debates, Tinubu said, “I see myself as a marketable individual. You want to use me to make money and I’m saying no.”

On controversies surrounding his age, school and time in the private sector, he said, “At the time of birth, I was dated March 29, 1952, in the family record. Then, I don’t think I had decided to be President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, not even that I would go into politics.

“I’ve had a very good record in life. My record is consistent in the university they questioned. They’ve now confessed that they wasted their money and their time. The record is there, and the transcript is there showing March 1952.

“I’m not claiming another father, I’m Tinubu and Tinubu proper. If they want a DNA, they could as well request for one.

“One of them was even accused of not being a Nigerian citizen, I didn’t touch that area.

“Equally, it remains the same. Chicago State University where I graduated has attested to that. Now, I can announce that I have received my original replacement degree certificate from them.

“Deloitte trained me as an accountant. Mobile Oil has attested to my outstanding record. I got to the pinnacle of my career in the private sector. Who among them can brag about that?

“Yes, you want to wrestle with the pig, you’ve got to live with the dirt. That’s what I’m doing. I got into politics knowing fully well that it is muddy water. Smog will come, and you will have to live with the dirt and make sure you are upright to finish the job.”

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Dogara joins PDP from APC after declaring support for Atiku

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Abuja —Former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara has dumped the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) for the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Channels Television reports that Dogara was received into the party during the presidential campaign by the party’s presidential candidate and former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar in the nation’s commercial capital, Lagos State.

This comes 48 hours after a group led by Dogara, the Northern Leaders Consultative Forum adopted Atiku as the preferred presidential candidate for the 2023 election.

On December 2, the group consisting of Christian and Muslim religious and political leaders in the north said after evaluation of all the presidential candidates, Abubakar is “the best”.

“It is evident that the All Progressives Congress (APC) is heading for implosion and extinction; hence, it cannot be the party for now and in the future, because of its rejection to embrace inclusiveness in a diverse country like Nigeria. After the 2023 elections, APC may be dead and buried as a political party,” the group said.

“While the duo (NNPP and LP) may emerge as strong contenders in the political arena in the future, from all indications, PDP appears to be the best option to adopt and support.

“All it takes is to sustain and tackle some of the problems and challenges this country faces.

“Certainly, with proper consultations and inclusive appointments, which is mindful of the federal character principle with a sincere consideration of diverse issues such as religious affiliation, geographical location, and ethnic identity, which many believe will enhance justice, fairness and equity, after a careful evaluation of all the issues highlighted above, we now recommend the adoption of the PDP to all lovers of democracy in Nigeria for the 2023 presidential election,” the group said.

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