Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the Minister of Information and Culture, has asked Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar to apologies to Nigerians following his colossal defeat at the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal on Wednesday.
Lai noted that Atiku needs to apologize because he wilfully distracted the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari with his frivolous election petition.
The Minister who is in St. Petersburg, Russia, stated this in his reaction to yesterday’s Presidential Election Petition Tribunal ruling on Atiku’s petition against Buhari’s victory at the February 23 presidential poll.
“Nigerians are tired of this orchestrated distraction, and will rather wish that the opposition, having lost at the polls and in court, will now join hands with the government to move Nigeria to the next level,” he said.
“This is more so that the judgement validating the re-election of President Muhammadu Buhari was unanimous that the petition lacked merit, that the petitioners failed to prove any of the grounds upon which their case was anchored and that President Buhari is eminently qualified to contest the poll,” he added.
Mr. Lai noted that the PDP and Atiku should be happy that they are not being prosecuted for coming up with fraudulently obtained evidence.
He noted that instead of heading to the Supreme Court, Atiku and his party should just apologize.
“It is intriguing that a party that trumpets the rule of law at every turn will present, in open court, evidence it claimed to have obtained by hacking into a supposed INEC server.
“Don’t they realize this is a criminal act for which they are liable? Instead of threatening to head to the Supreme Court, driven more by ego than commonsense, they should be sorry for allowing desperation to overwhelm their sense of reasoning. Enough is enough.”
PDP reacts, says Lai’s celebration would be short-lived
The PDP in its reaction told the minister to be cautious in celebrating Wednesday’s PEPT ruling.
The opposition party in its reaction through its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, described the PEPT ruling as a direct miscarriage of justice that cannot stand at the Supreme Court.
“The PDP notes that those celebrating this attempt to corrupt our justice system as well as the brazen approval of a clear case of perjury are directly telling Nigerians something about their conscience and character.
“Our party is not surprised that Lai Mohammed, speaking for the Buhari administration, came short of calling for the arrest and prosecution of opposition members for coming before the Appeal Court a situation which exposed their belief that they own the court and can determine the position of the judiciary on any matter.
“Notwithstanding, the PDP holds that Nigerians have seen the “several errors” in the judgment delivered by the Appeal Court and have turned the verdict to a butt of jokes in public space.”
PDP further ask Lai to tell Nigerians if his Law Degree was awarded to him on the basis of a sworn affidavit and pictures of his classmates.
“In fact, if anything, the unguarded outburst of the Minister of Information has heightened apprehension among Nigerians about recurrent manipulations of process by the APC and the Buhari Presidency.
“This is more the reason the PDP stands with Nigerians in heading to the Supreme Court to uphold justice in the matter and salvage our nation from this drift towards impunity, anarchy and lawlessness.
“In the meantime, the PDP counsels Lai Mohammed to redeem his image by offering explanations to Nigerians on his alleged role in the N2.5bn National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) fraud before casting aspersion on others.”
Ibrahim Kenneth Suleiman is the Chief Political Editor at Naija Buzz News Network. He is a graduate of political science from the prestigious Ahmadu Bello University Zaria, Kaduna State. He specializes in preparing/approving of political news contents before publication. He currently heads Naija Buzz News team of political correspondents. From Nasarawa State, North-Central Nigeria, Ibrahim is a strong supporter of Manchester United Football Club England.