Politics

I’m not on US watch list, Atiku insists

Former vice president and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate in the 2019 presidential election, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, has described as recycled and regurgitated lies reports linking him with a recent United States report on visa ban and individuals on the country’s watch list.

The former vice president also described the new reports as a desperate gambit by mischief-makers to recast discredited accusations.

In a statement issued yesterday, his Media Adviser, Paul Ibe, pointed out that his principal and family members were not under surveillance since he did not breach any laws, insisting, “These are recycled false allegations.

“My attention has been drawn to recycled and regurgitated lies about Atiku Abubakar. For the avoidance of doubt, Atiku is not under any U.S. watch list, neither has he been charged, or will ever be charged by the United States Justice Department or any other in a foreign jurisdiction,” the statement reads.

Ibe noted that the same recycled lies were re-unearthed just before the February 23, 2019 Presidential election, and to put paid to them, Atiku applied for and received a U.S. visa, whereupon he visited the U.S. on January 17, 2019 and stayed in a hotel close to the U.S. Department of Justice.

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“During that trip, Atiku was also received by officials of the United States Government. These new reports are a desperate gambit to recast these discredited accusations.”

They are meant to divert the attention of Nigerians from the recent statement by the U.S. Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, announcing visa ban for some certain notorious individuals,” he stated.

Atiku, who contested the 2019 president election on the platform of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) against President Muhammadu Buhari, also faulted timing of the report, saying, “Moreover, the timing of the report, less than 24 hours after the Edo State governorship election, should give some thoughts to thinking people.

“And considering the season we are in, more of such jaundiced stories seeking to discredit Atiku would come. However, it needs to be restated that the former Vice President and all members of his family keep a clean business portfolio and in conformity with local and foreign laws.”

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