By Saminu sani
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has explained why its candidate and former vice president, Atiku Abubakar, was absent at the signing of the peace accord by presidential candidates in the 2019 general elections.
PDP National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, said in a statement on Tuesday that the party was not represented at the event due to communication lapse between the National Peace Committee (NPC) and its national secretariat.
According to him, the PDP remains committed to a peaceful election and has already launched investigations into the circumstances that could have resulted in the communication lapse.
Ologbondiyan said, “Nevertheless, it is instructive to state that our Presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar and the party are fully committed to a peaceful electoral process and elections in 2019.”
“Our Presidential candidate is known worldwide as a global ambassador of peace, who will always support processes that will engender peace in our country and the world over.”
The PDP spokesperson added that the party is known for peaceful conduct in all activities, electoral processes, and all elections conducted at all levels in the country since its inception in 1998.
He stressed that the party would visit the office of the National Peace Committee, look into the peace document and fulfil all necessary obligations towards the peace accord ahead of the coming polls.
Earlier, President Muhammadu Buhari and other presidential candidates in the coming elections signed an agreement at an event organised by NPC.
Some of the items on the accord include running an issue-based campaign, refraining from speeches that would incite violence, as well as support the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to ensure a free and fair process, among other issues.
However, Atiku and the presidential candidate of the Allied Congress Party of Nigeria (ACPN), Dr Oby Ezekwesili, were among prominent candidates absent at the signing ceremony.