A newspaper report claiming former Senate President Bukola Saraki, Sokoto State Governor, Aminu Tambuwal, and his Bauchi State counterpart, Bala Mohammed have stepped down for former Vice President Atiku Abubakar in the race for the 2023 presidency has been described as false.
The Director-General of the Saraki Campaign Council, Earl Osaro Onaiwu in a statement made available to Naija News on Wednesday about the development said there is no iota of truth in the report that his principal and other aspirants have stepped down from the race.
He emphasized that Saraki, Tambuwal, and Bala are all still in the race, dismissing reports that the trio have stepped down for Atiku in the race for the 2023 presidential ticket of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
He described those spreading the rumours as agents of mischief who want to get the PDP ticket by deceit.
The statement clarified that the meeting between the aspirants on Monday was with the objective of working towards a consensus candidate for the PDP ticket but there was no discussion about any of the aspirants stepping down.
The full statement reads: “Our attention has been called to an online newspaper that our candidate alongside their Excellencies Governors Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto and Bala Mohammed of Bauchi states have stepped down for former Vice President Atiku Abubakar for the PDP presidential ticket.
“The report is sheer mischief and planted by those who want to gain the PDP ticket by deceit. For clarity purposes, our candidate and three other aspirants met with Vice President Atiku on Monday with the sole objective to inform him of their push towards a consensus candidate for the party.
“At that meeting, there was no talk of any of the aspirants stepping down as it is yet premature. To therefore find a planted story smacks of desperation and ill-intention.
“For the avoidance of doubt, our candidate is eminently qualified for the PDP presidential as a former two-term governor, Chairman of the Governors Forum, the most engaging and result-oriented Senate President and a former presidential aspirant.
“Also, Governor Aminu Tambuwal as former Speaker of the House of Representatives and a serving two-term governor is also qualified to be considered for the ticket.
“Last but not the least is Governor Bala Mohammed, a former senator, ex-minister and a serving governor is qualified for the ticket. So, let no other aspirant hide under some nebulous assumption that he is overly qualified than others to be stepped down for. When and if there is a concrete agreement on a winning consensus and others step down for whoever, it will be done openly, but until then, Senator Bukola Saraki, Tambuwal and Mohammed are still in the race.”
This article was originally published on Nigeria News