Mr. Paul Ibe, the media aide to the Presidential Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, has reacted to speculations concerning his principal’s whereabouts.
Ibe, in a statement issued on Tuesday, said Atiku traveled to Europe on business.
Ibe said that the former Vice President traveled on Monday night on a scheduled trip to meet with the technical partners of one of his business entities that were impacted by the COVID-19 global lockdown and the consequent economic downturn.
According to Ibe, the meeting would also focus on conclusive discussions for a planned expansion of its production facility.
However, there have been speculations from some quarters, including from members of the APC, that Atiku had traveled to France for medical treatment.
The Director of New Media of the All Progressives Congress Presidential Campaign Council, Femi Fani-Kayode, earlier in a series of tweets, said Atiku slumped in Abuja after arriving from Kaduna where he held his campaign on Monday.
He added that as a result, the PDP presidential candidate had been taken to Paris, France for proper medical attention.
“After his outing in Kaduna yesterday @atiku fell ill. He complained of dizzy spells& severe pains in his head& all over his body throughout the flight to Abuja. After landing at Abuja airport he collapsed. He was flown to Paris for medical attention immediately. God be with him.
“For the purposes of damage control they took pictures of him with others the following morning from Paris but please do not be fooled. There is something very wrong with the PDP presidential candidate in terms of his health & they don’t want the Nigerian public to know. Pray for him,” he tweeted.
When contacted, the spokesperson for the PDP, Debo Ologunagba denied Fani-Kayode’s statement but did not state Atiku’s whereabouts.
He said, “I don’t have any comment on that. Fani-Kayode. Is he a doctor, was he there? Why can’t we just focus on what is more important? Does that make any sense at all?
“Fani-Kayode said somebody is collapsing, that is not correct. You know that is a lie now. This is a man who went on a campaign yesterday and has schedules. On the 27th, he will be in the UK for the Commonwealth.
“I have told you; it (Atiku’s UK trip) is scheduled for next week. Of course, it (what Fani Kayode said) is a lie. It is a complete lie.”
When he asked if Atiku was still in Nigeria at the time, he said, “Don’t quote what I didn’t say. I didn’t tell you he is in Nigeria. I said that statement (Fani-Kayode’s claim) is a lie. It is an irresponsible statement. Atiku Abubakar had a very successful campaign in Kaduna.”