The Director General of the Atiku Presidential Campaign Organization (APCO), Otunba Gbenga Daniel, says the United States has been pleading with Atiku Abubakar to come for his visa, contrary to widely held belief that the Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar is being barred from going to United State because of corruption allegations.
Atiku was barred from going to the US after has accused of corruption allegations since he left office as vice president to Chief Olusegun Obasanjo in 2007. He has often denied the allegations, saying charges would have been preferred against him if he actually stole.
It all started when he was implicated in a Siemens bribery scandal which involved a United States Senator Williams Jefferson who served jail time for the illicit transaction. The former vice president was also accused of corrupt deals as head of the privatization council of the Obasanjo era.
However, Daniel says allegations of corruption often thrown at the PDP presidential flagbearer have been politically motivated. According to Otunba Gbenga Daniel during ChannelsTV breakfast program on Wednesday, October 31, the United States has been begging Atiku to come for his US Visa. He said:
“More than anything else, if you look at newspapers in the last few days, we’ve had even statements issued by the State Department that they have no issue whatsoever with Atiku Abubakar; and if I may chip this in, I can also confirm to you that in the last few days, there have been signals from the American officials that he should indeed come forward; they want him to come so that they would grant him visa.”
“I remember when we were running the campaign against the primary, and everybody kept confronting us with this perception; we kept saying the thing is no more than perception. Politically-motivated perception, which unfortunately appears to have stuck. But, by and large, I think as we move towards the real issues, people will begin to understand that all this is politically motivated.
“I have repeatedly said that we’re not in a Banana Republic. Nigerians, as a people, we know our weaknesses; anything that is negative about our leaders, we are ready to believe it hook, line and sinker. Until such a time when charges are pressed, then there are no issues as far as we are concerned.”
Atiku is squaring up to go head to head with the incumbent President, Muhammadu Buhari of the APC and over 70 other presidential candidates, in the February 2019 elections.