Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) party in the just concluded polls, Atiku Abubakar has said he would have picked his challenger in the Labour Party, Peter Obi again as his running mate should he have remained in the party.
Atiku said this on Thursday during a world press conference on the 2023 presidential election. According to him, Obi left PDP in 2022 when it was obvious he won’t get the party’s ticket. He said his choice of Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State was part of his commitment for a balanced ticket after Obi’s exit.
“I would have picked Obi again as my running mate if he was in PDP. But he left for Labour and I can’t stop him. Yes, he took most of our votes in the South East and South South states but that won’t make him president without the North.
”Recall that Obi was running mate to Atiku in the 2019 presidential election. They lost election to President Muhammadu Buhari won then seeking a second term in office.
Recall that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Saturday, February 25, conducted the presidential and National Assembly elections and, subsequently, announced the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, winner of the election.
INEC declared the former Lagos State Governor winner of the election after he polled 8,794,726 votes.
The INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, announced Tinubu as the winner at the International Collation Centre in Abuja, during the early hours of Wednesday.
The former Lagos State governor came out tops in 12 of Nigeria’s 36 states, and secured significant numbers in several other states to claim the highest number of votes — 8,794,726.
This is almost two million votes more than his closest rival — former Vice President Atiku Abubakar of the PDP.
Atiku, 76, who has now run for presidency six times, got 6,984,520 votes, while the candidate of the Labour Party (LP), Peter Obi, who, in less than a year, galvanised young voters in a manner some have described as unprecedented, finished the race with 6,101,533.