Nigeria: Again, Atiku Promises to Set Aside $10bn to Boost Businesses

* Okowa wants total rejection of Muslim-Muslim ticket

The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, yesterday promised to set aside $10 billion to support business growth across the nation if he becomes Nigeria’s president.

This is as the vice presidential candidate of the party and Governor of Delta State, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, called for total rejection of Muslim-Muslim ticket in the forthcoming presidential election to mitigate religious intolerance and ensure unity in the country.

Speaking at his presidential rally at Umuahia Township Stadium in Abia State, Atiku told a huge crowd of party supporters that businesses in Abia would be among the beneficiaries of the business growth package.

He further spelt out other measures he would take to enhance commerce and industry in the South-east zone, saying that the abandoned Eastern rail line would be revived and dry ports would be built.

The former vice president lamented that under the APC federal government the Igbo have been marginalised and relegated to the backyard because of the ethnic and religious politics of the ruling APC.

“Our party is not playing ethnic or religious card; what we are playing is the Nigerian card. When the PDP was in power, we ensured that people from the South-east and other parts of Nigeria were given a sense of belonging and we will do it again”.

Atiku said that Ndigbo constitute important stakeholders not only in PDP but in the Nigeria project in which they have contributed immensely hence they deserve a pride of place, adding that a PDP government would meet their needs.

“I want to appeal to the people to vote for us and we will meet all your requests. I approved the construction of the inland dry port in Abia State as vice president and I will ensure that it is completed when we take over power.”

Atiku sympathised with Nigerians over the present sufferings and hardships “that Nigerians are going through because of the naira redesign and lack of petroleum products in the country”.

According to him, these sufferings engendered by bad policies of the APC – controlled federal government were all the more reason Nigerians should vote them out.

On his part, the vice-presidential candidate of the party and Delta State Governor, Okowa noted that under the APC government the South-east has been subjected to untold deprivation with brazen marginalisation

He stated in the past every zone of the country was treated equally but immediately APC came to power things fell apart with manifest crisis in the country,

“This is not the country we used to know; we want to restore the dignity of Igbo man, we want a president that can unite Nigeria,” he said, adding that, “Atiku loves all, his doctor is an Igbo man”.

Assuring the South-east that the zone would be carried along in the PDP government, Okowa urged Ndigbo to avoid making a mistake and put their votes for the PDP, the party that would care for them.

Okowa has called for total rejection of Muslim-Muslim ticket in the forthcoming presidential election to mitigate religious intolerance and ensure unity in the country.

Okowa, who spoke at the presidential rally in Umuahia, and urged the South-east people to stick with the party for Nigeria’s recovery and good governance.

Okowa charged Abia State indigenes to work hard for the party’s victory, pointing out that Nigerians had embraced PDP “and those in South-east cannot afford to be in opposition anymore”.

“I say this with all seriousness because Atiku Abubakar will win the presidential election and PDP will return to power at the federal level and when that happens, we want to ensure that Abia State is counted.