Atiku, Tin­ubu meet again in Abuja

The Punch - - FRONT PAGE -

The 2019 pres­i­den­tial can­di­date of the Peo­ples Demo­cratic Party, Atiku Abubakar; Vice-pres­i­dent, Prof. Yemi Os­in­bajo; the Na­tional Leader of the All Pro­gres­sives Congress, Asi­waju Bola Tin­ubu; the Chief of Staff to the Pres­i­dent, Ma­jor-gen­eral Muham­madu Buhari (retd.), Abba Kyari; and other po­lit­i­cal heavy­weights met in Abuja on Satur­day.

Oth­ers present dur­ing the gath­er­ing in­cluded a for­mer Chair­man of the Eco­nomic and Fi­nan­cial Crimes Com­mis­sion, Al­haji Nuhu Ribadu; Gov­er­nor of Katsina State, Aminu Masari; a for­mer Gov­er­nor of Sokoto State, Aliyu Wam­mako; a for­mer Gov­er­nor of Ogun State, Se­na­tor Ibikunle Amo­sun and a for­mer Gov­er­nor of Oyo State, Abi­ola Aji­mobi

They were seen en­gaged in lively and cheer­ful dis­cus­sions as they threw ban­ters among them­selves.

The gath­er­ing was at the Al­nur Mosque in Abuja dur­ing the wed­ding fatiha of Ribadu’s son, Is­maila, and his now wife, Amina.

Atiku through his Me­dia Ad­viser, Mr Paul Ibe, in an in­ter­view with our correspond­ent in Abuja said his meet­ing with Tin­ubu, Os­in­bajo, Kyari and other po­lit­i­cal stal­warts, many of whom are from the APC, had no po­lit­i­cal un­der­tone.

He noted that po­lit­i­cal heavy­weights across di­vides had also at­tended the wed­ding fatiha of his son, Mustapha, and his then bride, Afrah Mubarak El-nafaty, at the Sul­tan Bello Mosque, Kaduna on De­cem­ber 14, 2019.

Ibe said, “When peo­ple are in­vited to a wed­ding fa­tiah, no­body should make un­due in­ter­pre­ta­tion be­yond that, oth­er­wise ev­ery other meet­ing at ev­ery other wed­ding or so­cial event will be in­ter­preted one way or the other.

“How can there be a po­lit­i­cal un­der­tone? Has wed­ding be­come a place for po­lit­i­cal meet­ing? The same way peo­ple across po­lit­i­cal di­vides at­tended the wed­ding fa­tiah of Atiku’s son two weeks ago in Kaduna is the same way he at­tended Ribadu’s son’s wed­ding fa­tiah.”

This is the sec­ond time Atiku and Tin­ubu have met in pub­lic in Abuja af­ter the Supreme Court’s judg­ment on Oc­to­ber 30, 2019 up­hold­ing Buhari’s elec­tion.

Atiku had con­tested against Buhari, who was the APC’S pres­i­den­tial can­di­date.

Tin­ubu’s spokesman, Mr Tunde Rah­man, had on his Face­book page shared a pic­ture of the first meet­ing of Atiku and Tin­ubu at the Nnamdi Azikwe In­ter­na­tional Air­port, Abuja on Satur­day, De­cem­ber 14, 2019.

In one of the pic­tures, Atiku and Tin­ubu held each other’s hands, and were seen en­grossed in a dis­cus­sion while the Gov­er­nor of Adamawa State,

Ah­madu Fin­tiri, was seen lis­ten­ing to them with rapt at­ten­tion.

Rah­man had cap­tioned the pic­ture on his Face­book as, “Asi­waju Bola Tin­ubu and for­mer Vice-pres­i­dent Atiku Abubakar ex­chang­ing views when they ran into each other at the Nnamdi Azikwe In­ter­na­tional Air­port, Abuja.

“Tin­ubu was on his way to Minna, Niger State, to re­ceive an honorary doc­tor­ate from the IBB Univer­sity, La­pai, and the for­mer VP, was go­ing to Kaduna for a wed­ding. They were flanked by Adamawa State Gov­er­nor Ah­madu Fin­tiri.”

Atiku was Vice Pres­i­dent from 1999 to 2007 dur­ing the ad­min­is­tra­tion of for­mer Pres­i­dent Oluse­gun Obasanjo un­der the PDP. He later de­fected to the APC.

Atiku and the for­mer Gov­er­nor of La­gos State were in the same APC camp ahead of the 2015 pres­i­den­tial elec­tion which was won by Buhari. The ex-vice pres­i­dent was one of the party’s pres­i­den­tial as­pi­rants who con­tested but lost to Buhari at the party’s pri­mary held in La­gos.

The for­mer vice-pres­i­dent af­ter Buhari had won the elec­tion, went back to the PDP with some other prom­i­nent Nige­ri­ans in­clud­ing the then Pres­i­dent of the Se­nate, Dr Bukola Saraki; the then Speaker of the House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives, Yakubu Dog­ara; the Sokoto State Gov­er­nor, Aminu Tam­buwal, and a for­mer Gov­er­nor of Kano State, Se­na­tor Rabiu Kwankwaso.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Nigeria

© PressReader. All rights reserved.