Poll: Atiku, Tinubu disagree over performance, health status

THE Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Presidential Candidate, Atiku Abubakar and the Presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, yesterday, disagreed over their performance and health status.

While Atiku described the APC candidate as the worst civilian governor in the history of Lagos State, Tinubu dismissed reports about the fragility of his health, saying he has been outworking his opponents in the race.

Atiku, in a statement by his Special Assistant, Public Communication, Mr Phrank Shaibu explained that contrary to what Tinubu’s handlers would want Nigerians to believe, the best governor of Lagos was late Alhaji Lateef Jakande, who was governor from 1979 to 1983.

Atiku’s aide, in a statement, said: “Tinubu cannot be the best product from Lagos. That title belongs to the late Lateef Jakande, who was a disciple of Chief Obafemi Awolowo. Jakande built the Lekki-Epe Expressway from scratch, effectively opening up the Lekki Peninsula axis.

“Jakande constructed the Alausa Government Secretariat and Governor’s Office, the Lagos State University, LASU, and the Nigerian Institute of Journalism, NIJ.

“He built all the low-cost housing units in Lagos. Some of the housing units include low-cost estates at Amuwo-Odofin, Ijaiye, Dolphin, Oke-Afa, Ije, Abesan, Iponri, Ipaja, Abule Nla, Epe, Anikantamo, Surulere, Iba, Ikorodu, Badagry.

“Jakande built all the general hospitals in Gbagada and Ikorodu as well as LASUTH. He also built 20 health centres in the state. Jakande also constructed most of the primary and secondary schools in Lagos that still stand today.

“Available records stated that Jakande built 11,000 classrooms between March and August 1980 and by 1983, he had built over 22,000 classrooms with 40 pupils per class. The then governor, in exhibiting his passion for education, established a Teacher Training College and a College of Education, COE.

“He was such an outstanding administrator that his tenure as governor remains a yardstick for good governance in the state.

“But what did Tinubu achieve as governor of Lagos? He claims that he met an Internally Generated Revenue of N600 million in 1999 and moved it to N5 billion a month.

“This has been fact checked by the CDD Election War Room and has been discovered to be false. “Tinubu’s strategy is based on falsehood. He paints a grim picture of Lagos he inherited, describing the state as a jungle and then exaggerates the little achievements he made in his eight years in office but Nigerians must not be fooled.

“Tinubu continues to take credit for the work of others even though he himself was a failure in government. He counts 1999 to 2023 as his tenure as Lagos State governor, therefore, appropriating the achievement of other governors and then promises to carry out their exploits on a national level.”

I’m outworking my opponents —Tinubu

Meanwhile, Tinubu dismissed reports about the fragility of his health, saying he has been outworking his opponents in the race.

Tinubu made the declaration when he met with critical stakeholders of the party with a view to forging a common front towards sweeping the polls.

Addressing participants, the APC candidate, who noted that he had been eager to meet with the party’s candidates, urged them to ensure they do not disappoint members of the party who elected them to fly the party’s flags at the polls.

His words: “As you can see, they call me weak but I am canvassing back and forth and, in every corner, and space of the nation. My opponents are not. I am outworking them because this election is a great mission for me, much more than my personal ambition.

“I am pleased to meet with you because in you I see our party’s hope and path to success. In you I see the hope of historic national progress as well.

“As so often in life, victory is not a cause for rest or celebration, it is a call to a greater challenge and harder toil. Thus, you all have won the primaries but now must climb the higher mountain called the general elections.

“We formed the APC, not just to be another political party. We formed it as a champion of the people to rescue democracy from the ravages of the PDP, who boasted of ruling the nation for 60 years.

“We formed this party to rescue the people and their collective prosperity from the avarice and greed of elite that will devour the nation’s God-given endowment if we allow such people back into power. As those flying our party’s flag, we carry a heavy burden on our shoulders.

“We have the mandate to deliver the party to victory, so that we may protect Nigeria from those who would devour all of its fruits.

“But winning takes us working as a united force. We have to act like the broom, the symbol of our party. A stick cannot clean any dirt but coming together under the band as one, we can sweep aside all the bad and wrong things that impede our nation’s growth and development.

“As individuals we must strive to win our respective elections. But that is not enough, we have to work together to deliver everyone contesting in our party. The presidential election, for example, is not solely about Bola Tinubu. It is your project as well. Your election is equally my project.

“I, therefore, rededicate myself to the victory of you all just as I do for myself. I too ask you all to re-dedicate yourself to the cause of the party and the future of the nation. I cannot be everywhere, no one can.  Our strength lies in our number and our spread.”

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