Atiku Abubakar, the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Uche Secondus, the chairman of his party were conspicuously absent at a ceremony to sign a Peace Accord, ahead of the 2019 elections.
However, President Muhammadu Buhari attended the event and signed the accord at 4.27pm, along with Adams Oshiomhole, the chairman of the All Progressives Congress.
The event held at the International Conference Centre, Abuja.
Some reports quoted Atiku’s media spokesperson as claiming that the PDP candidate was not aware of the event.
He was not only one present, according to Daily Trust. Other key presidential candidates that were absent include Mr. Donald Duke – Social Democratic Party, (SDP), Mr. Omoyele Sowore – African Action Congress (AAC) and Mrs Obi Ezekwesili – Allied Congress Party of Nigeria (ACPN).
The Peace Accord, which was also signed by all presidential candidates before the 2015 election, is the brainchild of former head of state, Abdusalami Abubakar.
The accord is an undertaking by all the presidential candidates to ensure peaceful and rancour free campaigns before, during and after the 2019 general elections.
The candidates are also expected to avoid hate speech, fake news or any act capable of causing socio-political unrest in the country.
Former Head of State and Chairman of the National Peace Committee, Retired Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar, said that the objective of the accord was to ensure peace before, during and after the elections.
Abubakar said that political parties must seek for peace throughout the electioneering period, as elections would not hold without peace.
“It is also important that governance after the elections will be impossible without a peaceful environment.’’
He also enjoined political parties to adopt Code of conduct that promote peaceful conduct and inclusiveness during electioneering period- before, during and after the elections.
Abubakar urged all political parties to keep to the provision of the peace document as they match toward the elections.
He said that by agreeing to sign the accord, all the political parties and their candidates had agreed to maintain peace, beyond self-interest and accept the outcome of the election for the good of the country and its citizens
Abubakar said that the security situation in the country should be source of concern for everybody and more especially political parties, saying you must not do anything to make the bad situation worse.