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I'm Not A Quitter, Says Atiku; Shuts Down Campaign Office

Source: THEWILL. - thewillnigeria.com
PHOTO: ALHAJI ATIKU ABUBAKAR (R) WITH CAMPAIGN DIRECTOR, DR BEN OBI AT THE WINDING DOWN OF THE ATIKU ABUBAKAR CAMPAIGN IN ABUJA TODAY, JANUARY 21, 2010.
PHOTO: ALHAJI ATIKU ABUBAKAR (R) WITH CAMPAIGN DIRECTOR, DR BEN OBI AT THE WINDING DOWN OF THE ATIKU ABUBAKAR CAMPAIGN IN ABUJA TODAY, JANUARY 21, 2010.
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SAN FRNACISCO, Jan 21, (THEWILL) - Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has said that he is no quitter and that anyone who thinks otherwise is making a mistake.

Atiku made the assurance today in Abuja at the formal winding down of campaign activities at his Campaign Organisation headquarters located on No. 1 Luanda Crescent

Wuse II, Abuja.
“As you all know, the convention (PDP presidential primaries) fell short of our expectations. You should not despair (and) on my own part, I want to assure you that I am not a quitter. If you think that I am quitting and giving up, you are making a mistake,” the former Vice President said to a thunderous applause from his Campaign staff.

Atiku recalled that only a few gave his bid for the PDP presidential ticket any chance of getting this far.

“When we began this journey a few months ago, few people gave us a chance of even being competitive. However, we were able to reach a number of important milestones along the way. Some said I was not going to be allowed to return to the party (PDP), but I did. Some said I was not going to be given a waiver, I got a waiver. Some said I may not emerge as Consensus Candidate, but I prevailed. Some said I was not going to go through the screening process, but I scaled that hurdle. We were also able to travel the country and interact with party delegates. And we became very competitive,” he said.

He hailed the Campaign directorate and staff for their commitment to the campaign efforts insisting that the bid was not lost due to their failure, but as a result of an absence of level playing ground.

“I would like to say that our inability to prevail last week Thursday (January 13) was not due to your failure; it was not due to your lack of effort or commitment. I know that you were committed and that you worked hard. So, I thank you from the bottom of my heart. You should, therefore, hold your heads high and never despair,” Atiku said.

The former Vice President disclosed that since the conclusion of the PDP Convention on January 13, he has been holding consultations with members of his family and political associates and that these consultations are ongoing.

“Since the conclusion of the convention I have been holding consultations with my family and political associates on the way forward. Those consultations are continuing,” he said.

“In the meantime, we shall be winding down activities at this campaign office and closing the office so that you may get back to the other aspects of your lives. I thank you for your hard work and sacrifices,” he said.

He, however, assured “I believe we shall reconvene.”

Earlier while bidding staff of the Campaign farewell, Director General of the Atiku Campaign Organisation, Sen. Ben Obi has said that irrespective of the outcome of the PDP presidential primaries, Atiku remains a political force to be reckoned with in Nigeria.

“We presented to the country a capable and qualified man who was ready and prepared to rule from day one. However, the story from Eagle square was different but we cannot give up.

“The country needs the services of this man. There is no way anybody can form a government without the support of the Turaki,” he added.

He assured the staff that all their remunerations would be paid.

“We will come back again and so be ready to be called upon even at short notice whenever the situation demands. For now we cannot keep you all together, but I know that we still have some steam left in our avowed commitment to working together with Nigerians to make good things happen in our dear country,” he said.

Atiku Abubakar, who ran a strong campaign was defeated at the PDP Presidential congress by incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan, who was backed by almost the PDP state governors.