Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar yesterday called on other politicians that dumped the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the All Progressives Congress (APC) to return to the PDP. Atiku was received at the party’s Abuja secretariat by the chairman of the Caretaker Committee Senator Ahmed Makarfi. The former Vice President said it is only by their returning to the PDP that he and other defectors could build a stronger and more united PDP that can regain power in 2019.
Addressing Makarfi, Atiku said, “All what I have come to do today is to come and show my face. Many people have read in the media that I have returned home. This is home. “Let me pay tribute to past leadership of this great party wherever they may be and to call upon them to please return home as I have done. “It is only by their returning home that we will build a stronger, more united party that can again return to government and continue to deliver the dividends of democracy.
”I can bet you the records we have achieved so far in governance, no government has yet even done 50 per cent of what we have achieved in government, not to talk of equalling our performance in government” “Over the years, like any or every human organisation, PDP has faced its challenges. But I want to pay tribute to those who have stayed steadfast through thick and thin to see us through to this point.
“Now that we have learnt our lessons, I hope that we will be guided by the lessons we have learnt. And that is to make sure that we build an all-inclusive party, where every part of this country will have a sense of belonging and sense of participation”. Makarfi said Atiku had opened the flood gates and that the party expects more high profile returnees and new entrants into the PDP in the days ahead.
“So PDP must be prepared for this, and be ready to reconcile and reintegrate in such a way and manner that everybody will be treated and given a level playing field to purse his or her personal aspiration. That is what PDP must stand for if it has to survive. The party chair denied the existence of any secret deal with Atiku for him to return to the party, adding that the ex Vice President isn’t one to go for secret deals.
“You have returned in good time and you should continue to contribute in this reinvention, remodeling of our party so that come 2019, we can reclaim what we can claim as ours. Because we still remain the only true democratic party in the true sense of the the word.
“We thank you for coming before the convention so that you can contribute to what we have started going forward. We will continue to consult you.
You will also help us reinvent the vehicle that will take us to Aso rock in 2019, we are not just targeting Aso Rock, we are targeting the federal legislature, the states; both the executive and legislature. We are targeting the local governments. “We want to sweep elections all across the country. As a united party, we have the capacity and we have the ability to do so”, Makarfi said.