Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the 2019 general elections, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar has pledged to form a government of national unity if elected into power.
The former Vice President stated this Friday at a meeting in Abuja with leaders of the Coalition of United Political Parties, CUPP, who earlier in the week, endorsed him as their sole Presidential candidate.
A visibly elated Atiku told the opposition leaders to dismiss any fear of a cabal in his government stressing that since same would be broad-based, no room would exist for a cabal to operate in the corridors of power.
He said: “I want to commit myself to the continuation of the doctrine a government of national unity.
“We believe as a political party in a government of national unity and there must be stability before you can do anything- implement your economic programme, implement your healthcare programme. Right from the beginning, I have been a member of the PDP and I know we have always believe in a government of national unity. It takes a long time for a country as diverse as Nigeria to be united and stable even before we start talking about which ethnic group we come from or which religion we practice.
“I want to assure you that as long as we are having a government of national unity , there will not be a cabal.”
He called on the coalition to do a public presentation of its decision to work together “so that Nigerians will be further enlightened , so that every nook and crannies of this country can be informed.”
On the clamour for the participation of young people in partisan politics, Atiku said what is paramount is the involvement of all and sundry, adding that democracy as a process does not pitch the old against the young.
“Democracy is not a process where one group replaces the other but it is a process where all groups participate. It is not a process where one group young or old, rich or poor exclude the other but a process where everybody participate,” he noted.
Amidst a thunderous applause from the crowd, Atiku narrated his journey to politics, stressing that were it not for the effort of democracy advocates like him, President Muhammadu Buhari would not be seeking participation in the polity today.
“In the 1980s when some of us joined politics, the reason was to drive the military out of power and restore democracy. That was what late General Yar ‘ Adua told me. He said, come and join me. I was in my late 30s and in the public service. I abandoned it and followed him. That was the beginning of my political career.
“If we did not drive the military, he won’t be here today talking about political parties and wanting to be President,” he stated.