The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, has promised to give 40 per cent of his cabinet positions to women and youths if elected in the 2023 elections.
While emphasising the importance of women and youths in national development, he raised concern over the high cost of living in Nigeria, blaming it on the failure of the Federal Government of the All Progressives Congress to effectively manage the nation’s economy.
Atiku, represented by a former chairman of the Senate Committee on the Federal Capital Territory and Spokesperson of his campaign organisation, Dino Melaye, expressed the view during the inauguration of the Atiku-Okowa Vanguard Nigeria on Saturday in Abuja.
At the event, the wife of the presidential candidate, Titi Abubakar, appealed to Nigerian women and youths for support, saying that her husband was well prepared to rescue the nation and bring it back to working ways.
“If my husband is elected, I will do more for Nigerian children and women. Atiku has promised women and youths 40 per cent in the cabinet, he is a man of his word and he will do it but it is you alone that can make it happen.
“I am appealing to you, our women and youths, don’t sell your conscience and your tomorrow but rather, stand for the right thing and your tomorrow will be better because Atiku will bring back Nigeria’s lost glory,” she stated.
The ceremony was attended by dignitaries including wife of a former Senate President, Mrs Helen Mark, and Director of Support Groups Atiku Campaign Organisation, Hon. Fabiyi Oladimeji.
“Without women and youths, there is no nation and part of my policy direction is to populate my appointments and empowerments by youths and women minimum 40 per cent.
“While women are asking for 35 per cent, Atiku is offering 40 per cent and let me assure you that this will be implemented to the later when we come on board.
“I used to fly economy from Abuja to Lagos for N18,000 but now over N100,000, we used to buy loaf of bread for N120 and now N1200, we used to buy Diesel at N150 per litre but now it is N800 per litre, dollar used to be exchanged for N210 and now N700 and rising.
“We cannot continue like this as a nation; so let us save Nigeria by electing Atiku Abubakar. You know no Nigerian can accuse Atiku of being a tribalist or a religious bigot.
“Nigeria is looking for a healer not a patient; so let us go house-to-house, door-to-door and campaign for Atiku and Okowa to rescue this country.
“Bola Tinubu, Peter Obi and others are prepared to be President but Atiku Abubakar is adequately prepared for the task of rescuing, uniting and rebuilding the nation.
“Obi is an upcoming President, his future is bright and age is on his side but we need a father figure who can unite the country,” Melaye said.
The chairman of the occasion and former Senate President, Senator Anyim Anyim, represented by Ebonyi State PDP governorship vandidate, Obinna Ogba, said political awareness had escalated with the advent of the social media.
Anyim commended the Atiku-Okowa Vanguard Nigeria for their efforts at marketing the party.
According to him, PDP had the best presidential candidate in the country and urged the group to intensify efforts at marketing Atiku to Nigerians.
The keynote Speaker at the event and National Secretary of PDP Samuel Anyanwu, said, “The attendance here today is a clear testimony that our presidential candidate is very popular and accepted by majority of Nigerians.
“Nigerians are looking up to the PDP for immediate rescue from the lacklustre leadership of the All Progressives Congress.
“This group is therefore a welcoming effort in our quest to rescue and rebuild Nigeria from the maladministration of the APC.
“The country is in a paralytic condition awaiting immediate rescue because every facet of the economy has become dysfunctional and putting the country under imminent collapse.
“Today, very few Nigerians can afford three square meals with unprecedented unemployment and poverty level earning the country the poverty capital of the world.
“No nation can survive the present circumstance of insecurity, banditry and terrorism, therefore the Atiku-Okowa Vanguard must embark on a strong mass mobilisation effort if we desire that our country must change,” Anyanwu stated.
Welcoming guests earlier, National President of the group, Hon. Oby Nwaogu said the group first debuted in 2018 and revalidated in 2022 to educate and inform Nigerians on the sterling leadership qualities of Atiku Abubakar and his running mate, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa.
She described Atiku Abubakar and Governor Ifeanyi Okowa as detribalised Nigerians, and very experienced leaders Nigerians needed to rescue the nation from the hardship and underdevelopment brought on the people by the APC.