The presidential candidate of the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, has promised to implement the policy of state police to address the security challenges in the country if elected in the 2023 general election.
Speaking today, October 22 at his campaign rally in Benin City, Edo State, Atiku also promised to revive Nigeria’s ailing economy by partnering with the private sector to ensure factories and industries resume operation for production.
He said that reviving the now moribund factories and industries would create an avenue for more job opportunities for the teeming youth population.
“Today, we are before you to restate our commitment. I will restate our five-program commitment to the people of Nigeria.
“We promised to revive the economy. We will make sure factories and industries resume production in this country. We will make sure there are enough jobs for our youths. This is what we mean by reviving the economy.
“We will work together with the private sector to make sure that industries and factories, particularly in Edo, resume operation so that there will be enough jobs for you.”
Listing other sectors in his five-point agenda, the presidential hopeful assured that he would improve infrastructure by rehabilitating roads that will link Edo to other regions and provide an efficient rail system for seamless interstate movement of goods and services.
“We will and shall, together with the private sector, make sure we have rail established system across this country so that you can move freely. And so that goods and services can move across this country.
“We have promised to reunify this country. This means that we are going to give every part of this country a sense of belonging. You will not be excluded from anything. And that is why we are being referred to as the unifier of our great nation.
“We will restore security. Whatever it is going to take us to do, we shall restore security in this country so that you can travel day and night, go to your farms and go anywhere secured. By that, what we mean is that we will put more policemen in the streets, we will equip and fortify them.
“Since we have promised to devolve more powers to the state and local government, you can also have your local police. We shall make sure your local police don’t harass you.
“We will send back all our eligible children to school. If you remember, during the PDP years, we established primary school education and made it compulsory in secondary schools.
“We were tasking Nigerians to educate these children but this All Progressives Congress (APC) government is not keeping to that promise. The nation’s universities will not go on strike. I assure you by the grace of God. I promise you that.”
The presidential hopeful who said APC is not a party to be supported owing to the prevailing challenges facing the citizens, urged Edo people to continue to support and stand by the umbrella party.
“You have seen how APC has destroyed this country, destroyed the economy of this country, destroyed educational opportunities and job opportunities. APC is not a party to be supported. Therefore, we call on you to be loyal to PDP and PDP will be loyal to you all.
“By the grace of God, I am here with many leaders of the party, they have done it before. We have seen what Governor Godwin Obaseki has done in Edo State, what Governor Emmanuel Udom is doing in Akwa-Ibom State and what Aminu Tambuwal is doing in Sokoto State. Go to any PDP state, and you will development in education, and infrastructure but when you go to any APC-controlled state you will not find anything there.
“Therefore, my brothers and sisters, my fellow people of Edo State, I have come here to make this undertaking and I promise you, we will fulfil our promises,” he added.
Ifeanyi Okowa, Delta State governor and the party’s vice presidential candidate, said that with collective efforts, Atiku will get the votes that will make him become president in the election.
“I am one of you and together we shall deliver the votes that will make Atiku become president of this country. By the special grace of God, we will work with the governor and all of you to deliver Nigeria from hunger, poverty and insecurity.”
The national chairman of the party, Iyorchia Ayu, said that the candidates were carefully selected because of their outstanding performances and experiences in governance, urging Nigerians to vote massively for them.
Earlier, the host Governor, Godwin Obaseki, who described Edo as the heartbeat of PDP, said: “Today, we are doing what our leaders did in 1999 when PDP was established and produced the president at that time.”
The Legacy group, a faction of the party in the state, led by the National Vice Chairman (South-South), Chief Dan Orbih, were absent at the rally.