Atiku departs US, heads to Abuja for presidential debate


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PDP’s presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, has departed US after his two-day visit

Report has it that he would land in Abuja ahead of the presidential debate holding in the nation’s capital today, Saturday, January 19

Atiku’s aide, Kassim Afegbua, had earlier said that his principal would attend the debate if President Muhammadu Buhari is ready to participate

The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, has departed from the United States of America after a two-day visit.

The Cable reports that he is expected to land in Abuja, the nation’s capital, for the televised presidential debate scheduled for 7pm Nigerian time.

The debate is between the leading presidential candidates. It is not clear if President Muhammadu Buhari, candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), would be in attendance.

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Atiku left the US after holding a town hall meeting with Nigerians in Washington DC.

The publisher of The Boss newspaper, Chief Dele Momodu, in a tweet on Saturday, January 19, confirmed that the former vice president has left U.S for Nigeria ahead of the presidential debate.

He said: “We are told that the PDP Flagbearer’s return is to enable him attend the much-hyped Presidential Debate holding today in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital. As well as show that he is fit and mentally prepared for the job of running Africa’s most populous country.”

The minister of information, Lai Mohammed, on Friday, January 18, said Atiku would be grilled upon his return to the country.

The federal government has accused him of playing a part in the collapse of former Bank PHB. Mohammed said there is evidence that Atiku benefitted N156 million from slush funds that led to the collapse of the bank. “Any time Abubakar returns home, he has questions to answer following the fresh evidence that we have that he benefitted from slush funds that led to the collapse of the former Bank PHB,” he had said.

It would be recalled that when Atiku returned from his Dubai trip in November 2018, operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS) searched his jet.


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A combined security team of DSS operatives, officers of the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS) and Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) had combed the jet for foreign currencies.


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