The Presidency has told the People Democratic Party and other opposition parties to shelve their 2023 ambitions because the vast majority of Nigerians esteem the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) and will never abandon him.
Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, said this on Tuesday shortly after observing the Eid prayers in Daura, Katsina State.
Shehu said Nigerians knew too well to allow another party to win the presidential seat in 2023.
He said, “The President enjoys unshakable support, not only in his hometown, but also across the country and it is enough for the opposition to admit that the President matters a lot for the ruling party and Nigerians in general.
“Again, he constitutes a political obstacle they cannot dismantle come 2023.
‘’We believe the PDP and other opposition parties are nursing false hopes of taking power come 2023.
“The masses will never abandon President Buhari’s leadership and the APC. I assure you that in 2023, the masses will be waiting for the President to what he has been building for the country in terms of infrastructure and the wellbeing of young people in the country.
“Nobody will take the risk by inviting another party to come and take over in 2023,” he said.
In response, the PDP slammed the Presidency over Shehu’s comments, saying that the assertion that Nigerians will be waiting for President Muhammadu Buhari “to show the way in 2023” has further heightened public apprehensions of a self-succession plot by the cabal in the Presidency.
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This was contained in a statement signed by the party’s National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, titled, ‘Buhari Presidency’s 2023 Comments Smacks of Self-Succession Plot’.
According to Ologbondiyan, “Nigerians were jolted when President Buhari’s spokesman, Shehu Garba, publicly announced in Daura, Mr President’s hometown, that President Buhari ‘constitutes a political obstacle’ which those who seek to succeed him, come 2023 ‘cannot dismantle.’
“Such statement by the Presidency, which is in its last lap of the second and final tenure in office, is not only provocative but also smacks of plots to derail our constitutional democratic order.
“Perhaps the comment by the Buhari Presidency explains why there has been a heavy onslaught against our institutions of democracy as well as the Electoral Act.”
He said that the PDP and the majority of Nigerians across the board and party lines “are issuing a stern warning to the President’s handlers” to note that such plots cannot stand as they will be firmly resisted.