The All Progressives Congress Presidential Campaign Council has clarified the remarks attributed to its presidential candidate, Bola Ahmed Tinubu at his campaign rally held on Tuesday at the U.J Esuene Stadium, Calabar, Cross Rivers State.
The APC standard-bearer has expressed his disaffection over the foreign exchange rate which put the Naira at the mercy of the American dollar.
Speaking on the heels of public reactions that Tinubu was attacking his own party and sitting President, Muhammadu Buhari, Bayo Onanuga Director, Media and Publicity of the PCC said the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and its presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar were the targets of Tinubu’s outbursts.
“The reference to exchange rate was not in any way an attack on the Muhammadu Buhari-led All Progressives Congress administration but an attempt to capture how the economic mismanagement of the PDP created forex crisis in the country since 2015.”
The statement further clarified that the APC presidential candidate could not have faulted President Buhari on provision of critical social infrastructures “having celebrated, numerous times, the achievements of the Buhari administration. Tinubu had also said at campaign fora he would build on the achievements, when elected on 25 February.”
The statement reads in part:” We find it important to correct the misrepresentation of the statement of our candidate, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu at the campaign rally in Calabar yesterday by a section of the media especially Thisday Newspaper and its broadcast arm, Arise News.
“While addressing the mammoth crowd of party supporters and people of Cross Rivers State that came to listen to his message of Renewed Hope at U.J Esuene Stadium, Asiwaju Tinubu urged the people not to vote for Peoples Democratic Party and its presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar because of their litany of failures while in power for 16 years.
“The reference to exchange rate was not in any way an attack on the Muhammadu Buhari-led All Progressives Congress administration but an attempt to capture how the economic mismanagement of the PDP created forex crisis in the country since 2015.
“Anyone who followed the entire sequence and context of what Asiwaju said at the rally in Calabar will know he directed his missiles against PDP and Atiku. Let’s we forget, the PDP left the forex reserve at $28 billion by May 2015, when Buhari took over despite unprecedented revenue from crude oil.
“Even with the massive oil theft and low price of crude, until recently, President Buhari had built up the reserve to about $38 billion. The PDP in 1999 met the exchange rate at N85 to one US dollar in 1999 and left it at N230 in 2015.
“The futile attempt to misrepresent Asiwaju Tinubu by the mischievous PDP media did not detract from his central message.
“Our candidate explicitly said the people should not follow PDP and Atiku because they don’t know the road.
“Asiwaju Tinubu could not have meant President Buhari does not know road, having celebrated, numerous times, the achievements of the Buhari administration. Tinubu had also said at campaign fora he would build on the achievements, when elected on 25 February.
“It is simply illogical that the same Asiwaju would attack the Buhari administration of not knowing the road.
“In contrast, throughout this campaign up till now, Asiwaju Tinubu has consistently said PDP and all the opposition parties put together do not know the road to prosperity for Nigeria. He also said the competing candidates do not have the track record he amassed as governor of Lagos.
“As the frontrunner in the race, he has promised to implement his robust Action Plan that will bring socio-economic prosperity to our country.
“We are not unmindful of the antics of Thisday and Arise News to deliberately misrepresent our candidate and accentuate anything they think will project Asiwaju Tinubu in a bad light since the beginning of this electioneering circle.
“We want to state categorically that all the machinations of the opposition elements to put a wedge between President Muhammadu Buhari and Asiwaju Tinubu will fail.
“APC, its leadership and President Buhari are strongly united behind our presidential candidate.
“All the sponsored innuendos, invented and imaginary discord in APC which the failed PDP and their media organs hope to cash on to win the coming election will blow up in their faces. ”
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