Segun Sowunmi, spokesman of the Atiku Campaign Organisation, has accused the campaign team of President Muhammadu Buhari of blackmailing him.
Sowunmi said this in reaction to the claim that he said unless Saturday’s presidential poll is rigged, it may be “practically impossible” for Atiku to win.
Some supporters of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) shared an audio where Sowunmi allegedly made the comment.
Festus Keyamo, spokesman of the Buhari campaign organisation, also shared the audio on Twitter.
It’s all over!!! Segun Sowunmi, Atiku’s spokesperson, in a leaked audio early February, throws in the towel. I expected this long ago, but it’s better late than never. #Sowunmitapes pic.twitter.com/HSlf2Rm86b
— Festus Keyamo, SAN (@fkeyamo) February 12, 2019
Sowunmi was quoted to have said: “Except for rigging, it’s practically impossible for Atiku to make the number again. Therefore, we are now back on campaign. We cannot abandon our campaign.”
But responding after the audio went viral, Sowunmi said it had become obvious that APC “and their agents have lost it completely by resulting into blackmail”.
He said the portion where he mentioned the name of President Muhammadu Buhari was replaced with Atiku in the version being circulated by APC supporters.
Sowunmi said those behind the audio doctored a BBC interview where he reacted to the suspension of the PDP campaign over replacement of Walter Onnoghen, chief justice of Nigeria.
— Segun Showunmi (@SegunShowunmi) February 12, 2019
“My attention has been called to a manipulative video that our friends, the APC, are moving about. It was an interview conducted by the BBC when they wanted to know why we were resuming campaign upon the suspension for 72 hours on the Onnoghen matter,” Sowunmi said.
“We have made a point; we have stood with the people; we have tried to demonstrate that leaders must act their words and that the independence of the judiciary, and indeed, of every arm of government was significant and important to our campaign.
“And that at that time I said that it is statistically impossible for Muhammadu Buhari to defeat Atiku. They have gone somewhere to cut off the Atiku and do the kinds of things they do. The APC must ask itself: ‘why is its message not resonating anymore with the people?”