A former governor of Niger State, Babangida Aliyu has said that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar will defeat the All Progressive Congress (APC) candidate, President Muhammadu Buhari in the 2019 general elections, if it is free and fair.
Aliyu, who is a member of the PDP, stated this in an interview with reporters in Kaduna State on Sunday, December 16, 2018.
According to THE CABLE, he stated that if the 2019 Presidential elections were conducted without the involvement of partisan security agencies and rigging, Atiku would emerge winner not just in Niger State but in the whole of Nigeria.
“Believe me, not only in my state, I believe that if the elections are free and fair; if there is no rigging; if the security agencies are not used against our party, we will make it. We will win. Atiku will defeat Buhari squarely,” he said.
Aliyu also seized the opportunity to address the President’s recent refusal to sign the Electoral Act Amendment Bill. He stated that the Senate could override Buhari’s authority if they dim it necessary.
He however stated that a decision like that would affect the forthcoming elections, indicating that if the bill is not signed before the elections, old laws that may affect the credibility of the election will be used in conducting it.
However, Aliyu appealed with Buhari to reconsider his stand on the Bill and also with the members of the National Assembly to have another look at the Bill.
His words: “If the National Assembly feels very strongly, they should be able to over-ride the veto.”
“But if it will create problems for the moment, we can wait. I understand that some of the conditions the president gave was that the electoral act could start with the next election and not this particular one.
“But I think that we need to be careful under his watch, to make sure that we don’t have any problem with the 2019 elections.
“In 2015, we understand what happened and everybody rallied round, even though the difference in the votes was not much, given the population of voters in the country.
“But if the Electoral Act Amendment Bill is not signed by the president and not over ridden by the national assembly, then it means we will use the old law and we will have no basis for asking anybody whether card reader has been used or not.
“We appeal to the president either to reconsider his position or appeal to the national assembly to look at it again.”