Ex-House of Representatives Deputy Majority Whip, Ahmed Muktar, has said former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has missed the opportunity to become President, asking him “to give a younger person a chance”. The Chairman of Justice and Equity Group (JEG), a group within the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), said Atiku’s best chance was in 2019 when he contested the presidential poll against President Muhammadu Buhari. Muktar said: “While it is undemocratic to ask a qualified Nigerian not to contest the presidency, we agree substantially that Atiku Abubakar has had his time and opportunities.
“He was presented in 2018/2019 as the only one with the capacity, the financial muscle, and experience to beat President Muhammadu Buhari. He fluffed the chance given to him by PDP. Age is also not on his side on 2023. “Nigerians have become weary of his perennial and perpetual candidature. It may be time for him to give a younger person a chance.” Muktar, however, called on the PDP to zone its 2023 presidential ticket to the North or throw it open to all zones as recommended by Governor Bala Mohammed Election Review Committee. According to him, the party’s concern should be who can win the presidential election and “change the terrible mess which the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) has turned Nigeria into”. He said former President Olusegun Obasanjo (South West) contested against Buhari from the North in 2003.
Muktar said: “Nobody mentioned that it was the turn of the North or South because different parties are governed by their own interests. “The PDP should be governed by permutations that will give it victory. “A blanket ban on any region from contesting the presidency under the PDP is manifestly and patently unreasonable, unjust, unfair, and contrary to natural justice. It is wrong and will not fly in a democracy. “As a matter of fact, the North has better claims to the PDP ticket than the South in 2023.” US pledges to support Nigeria’s fight against modern-day slavery The United State on Thursday pledged to support Nigeria in its efforts to combat modern-day slavery and all forms of human trafficking and smuggling. Ms Kathleen FlitzGibbon, Deputy Chief of Mission at the US Embassy in Abuja, said this at an event organised to commemorate the 2022 National Human Trafficking Awareness Month.