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Presidential election: Resorting to self-help dangerous, Lai Mohammed tells Atiku

The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, on Thursday cautioned Presidential candidate of People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, not to resort to self-help in seeking justice over the outcome of just concluded elections.

The minister, who briefed newsmen in Abuja in reaction to posters that flooded Federal Capital Territory on Tuesday, said Atiku should realise that his only acclaimed ‘stolen mandate’ can be challenged through lawful channel.

He said it was absurd that Atiku had hired a lobbying firm to convince the United States not to recognize the re-election of President Buhari until the Supreme Court has ruled on the suit he filed.

“It was unfortunate that Atiku was thinking of replicating the Venezuelan model right here in Nigeria,” he said.

He asked former Vice President to allow the court to determine the merits or otherwise of his petition against the winner of the 2019 presidential election in Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari.

Mohammed added, “It was wrong for the to resort to self-help in his desire to claim victory in the election.

“As you must have noticed in recent times, posters bearing the picture of former Vice President and the presidential candidate of the PDP, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, with the inscription: ”THE PUKKA, H.E. ATIKU ABUBAKAR, THE REAL AND THE RIGHT”, have surfaced across major streets in Abuja.

“The appearance of these posters coincide with the media report that Alhaji Atiku Abubakar has hired a US lobbying firm to convince the United States not to recognize the re-election of President Buhari until the Supreme Court has ruled on the suit by the PDP presidential candidate.

“The posters and the hiring of US lobbyists, the latest of such by the PDP candidate, have triggered questions about what Alhaji Abubakar is up to. Is he starting a fresh campaign after the elections have been won and lost?

“Has he rescinded his decision to challenge the results of the presidential election in court, perhaps after realizing that the results he claimed to have obtained from the INEC back server are cooked? Is he now going for self-help? What really is Atiku’s motive?

“Gentlemen, we are aware of media reports that the PDP presidential candidate on Wednesday distanced himself from the posters that are circulating in Abuja. He also reportedly denied hiring US lobbyists, claiming tongue-in-cheek that the APC fabricated the report.

“If the media reports are right, it means that the former Vice President has suddenly realized the grave implication of his actions, hence has decided to beat a quick retreat before it is too late.

“As a self-avowed democrat, he should realize that the only lawful channel for challenging the result of an election is through the courts. Resorting to self-help, as he seems to be doing now, is an act of desperation and the consequences are dire.”

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