The Publicity Secretary of the Lagos State branch of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Joe Igbokwe, has warned former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, that his defection to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is meaningless because nobody can beat President Muhammadu Buhari in the 2019 presidential election.
While speaking in an interview with The Nation, Igbokwe said even though Atiku's defection will lead to the exit of some members of the APC, the party will still coast to victory in 2019.
He further called Atiku a liar, saying that his claims that President Buhari does not cater to the country's young generation is false.
He said, "The former VP has moved to the PDP and there is no doubt some people will go with him. But, whether that will translate to victory for him is what is very clear because nobody can beat Buhari.
"Atiku may have given us reasons why he left, but they are lies. Atiku is 71 years old and we know that by 2019 he will be 73. If he did not win and by 2023 he will not be sure of winning, so Atiku is fighting a battle of his life.
"Atiku said Buhari does not care about youths, Buhari has been caring for young people and they are well taken care of.
"Things of the world does not move Buhari, that is why he is fighting corruption and deploying the money to care for the youths and working on the economy.
"We are not going to reverse the gains that we have recorded; Buhari has started a revolution which he cannot stop."
Atiku's defection from APC to PDP
Atiku resigned as a member of the APC on November 24, 2017, after months of growing discontent.
In his signed resignation letter, the 71-year-old accused President Buhari of neglecting him and condemned the APC for "instituting a regime of a draconian clampdown on all forms of democracy".
In a live Facebook broadcast on December 3, the former Vice President officially declared his return to the PDP.
In an interview with Dele Momodu, the Publisher of The Boss magazine, Atiku noted that Buhari has wasted his massive goodwill, adding that he will defeat the president in 2019.
History of Atiku as presidential contestant
After serving as Vice President to former President Olusegun Obasanjo between 1999 to 2007 under the PDP, Atiku contested the 2007 presidential election as a candidate for Action Congress (AC), losing to the late former President Umaru Yar'Adua.
He returned to the PDP only to lose the party's primary election for the 2011 presidential election to the eventual winner, Goodluck Jonathan.
Due to an internal party crisis he defected to the APC in the run-up to the 2015 presidential election before losing the party's ticket to another eventual winner, President Buhari.
Buhari's reelection status
While meeting with the Nigerian community in Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire in November, the president explained that he was accompanied to the meeting by two state governors because it will "be another vote for me in the future."
Also, while speaking during a two-day visit to Kano State a week later, the president said he's confident of winning reelection particularly due to the crowd turnout.
"I am overwhelmed by the sea of people I see, and by what I see today, if elections are contested I will no doubt win it," he said.