The presidential candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in the February 23, 2019 election, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, has denied planning to lead a street protest over the controversy surrounding the election result.
Atiku and the PDP are challenging the outcome of the election which President Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress (APC) was declared the winner.
In a statement by the spokesperson to Atiku, Paul Ibe, on Sunday, said the former Vice President is not planning to lead a protest if court ruled that the Independent National Electoral Commission server did not exist, adding the report on the matter was false.
The European Union Election Observation Mission (EU EOM) in Nigeria on Saturday virtually knocked the bottom out of the election petition filed by Atiku and the PDP, when it said it was unaware of any server used by the Independent National Electoral Commission.
Briefing newsmen in Abuja on the EU EOM’s report, the Deputy Chief Observer for the EU, Hannah Roberts said the mission knew nothing about INEC server that was allegedly used to transmit results of the 2019 general elections.
She said the Mission relied on results that were released by INEC. She categorically said the mission was unaware of an INEC server by which results were transmitted during the election.
“The EU had to rely on INEC’s explanation in result transmission,” she said.
The PDP and Atiku had claimed that an INEC server was used to transmit results of the 23 February presidential election and at the election tribunal, has obtained an order to examine the server.
It is the main ground, Atiku’s petition, challenging Buhari’s victory at the tribunal is based.
INEC in its counter-affidavit at the tribunal dismissed the existence of any server, saying that results were manually collated across the country.
However, Atiku Statement on Sunday said: “Our attention has been drawn to a statement circulating in a section of the media, to the effect that Atiku Abubakar, Presidential candidate of PDP in the 2019 presidential election and Vice President of Nigeria, 1999-2007 plans to lead a street protest in the event that the election petition tribunal rules against his him and his party on the issue of a server for the Independent National Electoral Commission.
“I wish to emphatically state that such a statement did not emanate from Atiku Abubakar or his privies. It is the work of mischief makers who want to mar his spotless pro-democratic record and lay the ground work for their threatened actions against him on false charges of being a threat to national security.
“For the avoidance of doubt, Atiku Abubakar believes in the Rule of Law and in the laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. In his almost four decades in politics, he has never taken action or spoken words against democracy and will not start now.
“Atiku Abubakar and his team have confidence in God and thus call on those bent on mischief to have the fear of God and retrace their steps. Democracy has come to stay in Nigeria. The culture of fear being created now cannot rein in our democracy. Nigeria and Nigerians have a consistent history of outlasting tyranny and will continue to do so by the grace of God.”