Atiku’s exit: Accept my sympathy - Buhari tells Odigie-Oyegun

President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday sympathised with the National Chairman of the ruling All Progressives Congress, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, over the exit of former Vice President Atiku Abubakar from the party.

Buhari told Odigie-Oyegun, who joined top government officials at the venue of the inauguration of the National Minimum Wage Committee, led by former Head of Civil Service of the Federation, Ama Pepple, “accept my sympathy for losing a senior member of your party.”

The president said this to Oyegun while acknowledging dignitaries who attended the event, ahead of his formal remarks on the occasion.

Although the president did not mention Atiku by name, it was obvious he was referring to the former VP who publicly announced his resignation from the APC, last Friday. The former vice president, alongside others, contested for the party’s presidential ticket in 2014, ahead of the  2015 general elections. He, like other contestants, lost to Buhari.

Atiku came distant third behind Buhari and a former Kano State governor, Alhaji Rabiu Kwankwaso.

The presidency has been quiet on  Atiku’s exit since the news broke last Friday. Before making his position public on Friday, Atiku had  resigned from the APC on October 18, 2017. In his resignation letter, the former vice president said he left the APC because he could not “reconcile” himself with the ruling party’s dismal performance.

The resignation letter was addressed to the APC ward chairman in Jada 1, Jada Local Government Area of Adamawa State.

Also, the Buhari Support Organisation (BSO), one of the legacy support groups which campaigned for Buhari’s election in 2015 has said Atiku’s supporters are free to leave the APC with their leader.

The group said president Buhari has no match in the North for the 2019 election; hence, he will, according to them, “go for re-election and will win convincingly.”

BSO Enugu State Coordinator, Anike Nwoga, who stated this at an APC event in Enugu, yesterday, urged those aspiring to replace Buhari to forget the idea, and explained that it is better for Atiku supporters to quit than to remain as fifth columnists and cause crises within the party.

Meanwhile, former secretary to the Enugu State Government, Chief Onyemauche Nnamani, has said democracy cannot work without opposition and has urged the state government to stop harassing the opposition in the state. The beauty of democracy, he said, is that it offers alternative, the same reason that Nigerians voted out the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in 2015.

Nnamani vowed that the APC in Enugu will continue to keep the state government on its toes, but, however, said the APC must do well at the centre, in order to retain power in 2019, or “another party will throw us out.”

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