The All Progressives Congress has described the statement credited to the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar, as an attack on the country’s national unity.
Atiku had on Saturday at the Arewa town hall policy dialogue in Kaduna, said, “What the average Northerner needs is somebody who is from the North … he doesn’t need a Yoruba Candidate or an Igbo candidate.”
Reacting in a statement issued Sunday by the National Publicity Secretary of APC, Felix Morka, the party said the desperation by Atiku showed that he cannot be entrusted with the most important job of President.
Morka said: “Evidently, Atiku seeks to inflict on Nigeria discord and strife of a worse kind than he has inflicted on his PDP.”
“It is beyond the pale for a senior citizen and a former Vice President of the Federal Republic to so brazenly instigate strife and disunity in our country in pursuit of his befuddled political self interest.
“If, as Atiku believes, the average Northerner needs a Northern President now, after a Northern President, when will they ever not need a Northern President? What does Atiku think the average Southerner needs? Why is it about what the average Northerner needs, or even what the average Southerner may need? Why is it not about what Nigeria and Nigerians need? Nigerians need bold and visionary leadership anchored on a firm commitment to transcendental national unity, over and above ethnic or sectional obsessions.
“Atiku’s words ring loud of extreme and mindless desperation, and such an extremely desperate man cannot and must not be entrusted with the most important job of President – a job which core duty is that of leading, uniting and working in the best interest of all in an ethno-religious pluralistic society as Nigeria. Our country does not need this kind of highly inflammable rhetoric now or ever”.