WHY I SETTLED FOR OKOWA AS RUNNING MATE- ATIKU

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Ifeanyi Okowa and Atiku Abubakar

 

By Our Reporter

The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar has given reasons why he chose the Governor of Delta State, Ifeanyi Okowa, as his running mate in the forthcoming 2023 general election.
Speaking at the PDP National Headquarters in Abuja on Thursday, Atiku told a gathering comprising the party’s leadership, including the National Chairman, Iyorchia Ayu, that he had arrived at the decision to pick Okowa as his running mate after holding wide consultations with the state governors on the platform of the party, the National Working Committee, Board of Trustees and other stakeholders.

He said, “I made it clear that my running mate would have the potential to succeed me at a moment’s notice, that is, a President-in-waiting.

In other words, the person must have the qualities to be President. The person must have an appreciation of the deep rot which our country has been put into by the rudderless APC government.
He must understand the great suffering that most of our people are going through and the urgency of relieving them of that suffering, understand the critical importance of economic growth and development to provide our young people with jobs, hope, and a pathway to wealth.

“The person must appreciate the critical importance of education in the development of modern societies so we can prepare our young people to be able to compete in the increasingly competitive and globalized world.
“My running mate must understand that without security, development will be very difficult because local and foreign investors who have been scared away already, would not return to invest in our economy. Thus, my running mate will be a person who will stand by me as I confront the frightening level of insecurity in our land.

“My running mate must also not only symbolize the imperative of reuniting our country but also be able to work with me to achieve that objective. This is because a united Nigeria is a potentially stronger, more prosperous, and more secure country able to lead Africa and give hope to the Black race.
“In addition, my running mate has to be someone who is not afraid to speak his mind and give honest advice, and be by my side as I work very hard to reverse the destructive impact of the past seven years of the APC government.
“In the United States of America from where we borrowed key aspects of our current Presidential system, a running mate is used to balance the ticket, complement the candidate and after victory, assist the President with governance. Sometimes a candidate is chosen who generates a buzz and adds huge excitement to the campaign.
“My running mate has to be ready to start working with me, from day one, in addressing our country’s challenges. Nigerians will not accept anything less.
That is why I promised the Governors of our party that my running mate will come from among them. Our current challenges call for a government that is highly focused and disciplined.
“Let me state that the person I have chosen as my running mate possesses all those identified qualities.

He personifies not only the seriousness the current moment represents for our country but also the future that our young people yearn for and deserve.
He is a serving state governor who has demonstrated in his state and through his conduct, that governance is about service to the people.
“I know that he will not only add excitement to our already energized ticket and campaign, but will also help to bring focus, discipline and stability to our government, come 2023.
I am pleased, therefore, to announce here my choice of running mate who will help to lead us to victory next year not only in the Presidential election but also in the governorship and legislative elections. And he will be by my side as I work hard every day to provide our people with security, revive our economy, improve education and unite our country.
He has both legislative and executive experiences. Please join me in welcoming to the ticket the next Vice President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, His Excellency Governor Dr Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa.”
Atiku also described Okowa as a fighter and winner who cares about good governance and the governed.

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