- An Atiku support group has lamented the cost implications of election postponement
- The group said the losses is beyond the N140 billion earlier claimed by the National Association of Nigerian Traders
- The group also said the outcry that greeted the postponement shows that Nigerians are tired of being made a laughing stock to the world
A support group for the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, has decried the postponement of the general elections by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The group, Professionals for Atiku, stated this in Lagos state, saying the cost implications are huge and not recoverable.
The national president of the group, Dr. Joseph Erico Ameh, in the statement made available to Legit.ng, said INEC may be justified by its action if it was aimed at conducting free, fair and credible elections, but the huge cost and damage it has done to the nation's economy cannot be overlooked.
"We are trying to situate the postponement properly given the reasons INEC gave but we cannot as professionals and people engaged in business gloss over the huge damage it has done to the economy of the country.
"The postponement should not be viewed as just a one day thing but an event with rippling effect on the economy of the nation. From the stock market to trading, transportation and the ability of Nigeria bro attract quality investment, the damage is huge," Dr. Ameh, a security expert and managing director of Real Strikers Security Services said.
According to Ameh, though the National Association of Nigerian Traders (NANTs) has put their loses on Saturday, February 16, at N140 billion, the loses goes beyond that as the electoral body, the federal government, states, political parties and individual Nigerians also incurred huge loses that are not recoverable.
Speaking further on the the disappointment of the group, Dr. Ameh said: "As Nigerians and stakeholders in the politics of this nation, I must confess that it came as a shock to us just like every other Nigerian. We had hoped that by now, the presidential and National Assembly elections would have been behind us and expectedly, we would begin to celebrate the victory of our candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar.
"But since it is the duty of INEC to organize elections in the country and ensure that things go smoothly, we have no option than to accept the painful reality that the elections could not hold as scheduled.
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"It is painful and shameful at the same time, especially given the level of assurances the electoral body gave concerning their readiness for the elections."
Dr. Ameh also disagreed with insinuations that the postponement may have had an adverse effect in the chances of their principal, Atiku.
Ameh said: "To be truthful, the postponement will not in anyway affect Atiku's chances at the polls. Atiku presidential ambition has become a movement, an awakening that majority of Nigerians see as a must.
"The postponement of the elections has only reinforced the need to get Nigeria working and change the narratives of failure, cluelessness and the shabby ways things are done in the country.
"The outcry that greeted the postponement shows that Nigerians are actually tired of being made a laughing stock to the civilised world. We are tired of the continued inefficiency of our institutions and government. We desire a new order and a new way of doing things and that is what Atiku stands for."
On why professionals from different walks of life are supporting Atik's ambition, Dr Ameh said it is their belief that an Atiku presidency can bring the needed synergy in governance that will reposition professionals in their various endeavours in the country.
"We also believe that as profesionals, an Atiku presidency will provide us the needed conducive environment for us to thrive in our professions. Because, as you know, these are people who already have capacity and have created a nitch for themselves in their areas of human endeavours. They are also people who are employers of labour or who are functioning, as it were where they are employed.
"We have decided to stand in the gap and take the message of Atiku's election to every nook and cranny of the country and also amplify Atiku's message to Nigerians so that they can see reasons why the former Vice President is the best man for the presidency of our dear country.
"Atiku is capable, sensible, intelligent and he is a successful and progressive businessman who loves Nigerians. He is a true Nigerian who is not tribalistic. And that is why, as professionals, we decided to support and promote his candidacy," he said.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng earlier reported that the national publicity secretary of the PDP, Kola Ologbondiyan, said some people within the Buhari presidency and APC will work to ensure the victory of Atiku Abubakar in the presidential election.
Ologbondiyan on Wednesday, February 20, stated that PDP is very optimistic that it will win the coming presidential election and other elections in the country.
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