The former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, has formally declared to run for the office of the Nigerian president in 2023 under the platform of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
The former vice president, who made the declaration at an elaborate event at the International Conference Center (ICC), in Abuja, also vowed to hand over at the end of his tenure to the younger generation.
The event which witnessed the presence of many dignitaries was hosted by the Adamawa State governor, Umaru Fintiri.
Mr Abubakar, an indigene of Adamawa State, clinched the ticket of the opposition party in 2019 but was defeated by incumbent President Muhammadu Buhari.
To clinch the PDP ticket in 2019, he defeated other aspirants such as a former senate president, Bukola Saraki, Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto, former Kano governor Rabiu Kwankwaso, amongst others.
Mr Abubakar is expected to compete for the ticket with Mr Tambuwal, Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi and other PDP presidential aspirants.
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The former vice president while reeling out some of the plans he has for the country vowed to hand over to a younger generation if elected.
He also said he intends to focus on five key areas which he listed as unity of Nigeria, security, economy, education and devolving more resources and powers to the federating units.
“Since the civil war, the unity of Nigeria has never been threatened as it is today. Nigerians are losing hope in the oneness of this country. My fellow Nigerians, I am the unifier that is coming to bond the broken union.
“We will open doors for dialogue to hear the grieving voices of all Nigerians. Under my presidency, there will be a new Nigeria, where everybody has an equal voice and is heard.
“Throughout my life, I have never looked at Nigerians as divided people. In my eyes, all Nigerians are the same. When I see you, I don’t see Yoruba or Hausa or Igbo or Fulani or a northerner or southerner; when I see you, I only see a Nigerian, and I expect the best from you.
“All Nigerians are equal and should be seen and treated equally. There is no unity without justice and fairness. That is why I will deliver leadership of justice and fairness,” he said.
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Mr Abubakar accused the governing All Progressives Congress (APC) of failing to live up to its responsibilities of protecting the lives and properties of Nigerians which he said will be his top priorities.
“The APC administration has failed in its fundamental responsibility of protecting the lives and properties of Nigerians. The most significant human right is the right to life, which has not been protected under the APC administration.
“Our military forces are fighting on the front lines without equipment and morale. That is not fair.
“If we get into power, we will increase the welfare of all security forces. We will use modern technology and intelligence to combat insecurity.
“We will also increase the number of personnel for our security agencies.
“Why security? Because national security is the first sign of a functional government, and where it does not exist, we must not blame those who threaten it. We can only blame a government that allows it to be threatened. And if I am elected as your President, insecurity is one thing I will not tolerate,” he said.
He also vowed to secure the rural communities to boost agricultural activities.