It’s payback time, step down and endorse me for president, Tinubu tells Atiku

Bola Tinubu, the presidential candidate of the All Progressive Congress (APC) has called on his rival, Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to step down and endorse him for the top job.

Mr Tinubu who made the call in Kaduna on Monday said it was payback time for the former vice president, a serial presidential contestant, to return the support he has gotten over the years from him.

The duo and Peter Obi, the flag bearer of the Labour Party (LP) are all in Kaduna. While Messrs Tinubu and Obi are in the state to honour an invitation from the Arewa Joint Committee (AJC), Mr Abubakar is campaigning therein also.

Reacting to the recent divisive remark of the PDP candidate who urged his kinsmen not to vote either Yoruba and Igbo candidate in the 2023 presidential poll, the former Lagos governor described Mr Abubakar as an ungrateful fellow who has constituted himself as his greatest rival for the job he opined was his turn to man.

Addressing the coalition of Northern groups, Mr Tinubu said the Adamawa politician ought not to be campaigning the same day he is in the state.

He said he has sustained a long, abiding political relationship with the North and was reaping the benefit through the support he is currently getting from the region.

“My political history is full of examples where I have abiding support for the North… for the late Shehu Yar’Adua. I’m standing before you saying this. Even my greatest rival today met me with Yar’Adua…Atiku Abubakar met me with Yar’Adua. I was one of the youngest, brilliant strategists of the late Shehu Yar’Adua,” he boasted.

“He (Atiku) was just out of the Customs that time. Ask him to and read the Civil Service Regulation. They asked him questions on how he made money (and) he said from selling cars. Can you as a civil servant involve in other trades and businesses? You have attracted disqualification, you don’t deserve to compete with others.

“I have said that my political history is full of long, abiding support for the North. Nuhu Ribadu was on our platform, I supported Atiku Abubakar in 2007 then… don’t pay me if I ask for the payback period. It’s payback (time), let him endorse me now instead of conducting rallies around Kaduna while I’m talking to great people here,” Tinubu said, apparently referring to an ongoing rally held by Atiku on Thursday.

“To its credit, the North is paying back in good measure. I’m the flagbearer of our party today partly because of the decision of the northern APC governors who rose to the occasion by standing up for our country and the unity of our people, against primordial consideration,” he added.