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General News of Tuesday, 17 January 2023


Tinubu vs Atiku: Stop ranting like little kids – HURIWA to APC, PDP candidates

Emmanuel Onwubiko of HURIWA Emmanuel Onwubiko of HURIWA

Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, (HURIWA) on Tuesday, slammed the presidential candidates of the All Progressives Congress, APC and his counterpart in the Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar over campaigns of calumny against each other.

HURIWA’s National Coordinator, Emmanuel Onwubiko, in a statement said both parties’ candidates are two sides of the same coin since both sides are claiming that their opponent has been found to have allegedly committed the same offence of money laundering they are accusing each other of.

The group said instead of throwing childish campaigns here and there that do not advance Nigeria or benefit the citizens in any way, the two candidates should surrender themselves for scrutiny at town halls and present their agenda before Nigerians as well as answer their questions directly just as other presidential candidates are doing.

HURIWA challenged the candidates to stop their childish rantings that have zero contributions towards advancing the public good but should speak to Nigerians and demonstrate their knowledge of how to end hunger, stop insecurity, check joblessness and reverse the unsavoury economic indices in Nigeria.

HURIWA’s statement followed a 72-hour ultimatum given by the APC to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICP) and the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) to arrest Atiku over alleged Money Laundering, Criminal Breach of Trust and Criminal Misappropriation, and Conspiracy.

The APC rode on the allegations by a whistle-blower, Michael Achimugu, who in a trending audio recording alleged that Atiku as former Vice President between 1999 and 2007, colluded with his then boss, Olusegun Obasanjo, to fleece the country and steal public funds using what he termed Special Purpose Vehicles.

The PDP, however, fired back and said the effect of the conviction and forfeiture of the sum of $460,000 by Tinubu in the United States confirmed that he is ineligible to run for the office of the Nigerian President.

Onwubiko said, “The case of APC and PDP is very laughable! It is because both Atiku and Tinubu are accusing each other of same offences that they allegedly said each other committed.

“At least, a spokesman for Tinubu’s campaign and serving minister, Festus Keyamo confirmed that the APC presidential candidate forfeited $460,000 in one of the 10 US banks linked to him and that he ‘mistakenly’ stayed in the same house as drug barons!

“Now, a whistleblower has accused Atiku of money laundering and other related offences and Atiku’s campaign spokesman, Dino Melaye said the campaign council doesn’t want to talk about it?

“The two candidates must stop infantile campaigns of calumny against each other. HURIWA demands immediate cessation of the deployment of childish and provocative diversionary methods as political campaigns.

“We demand that candidates for elective offices should face Nigerians and debate at a town hall, village squares, TV stations, and radio stations on issues and aspects of the blueprints on how to reverse the bad state of the economy.”