THE DILEMMA FACING PETER OBI’S CAMPAIGN TEAM ACROSS STATES OF THE FEDERATION
Labour Party hierarchy and the presidential campaign team of Peter Obi should understand the peculiar sentiments of the voters in across the country particularly in the Southeast and Southsouth which is unusual and at best described as unique. How do you handle a situation where candidates of PDP, APGA, APC and YPP for various elective positions are heard telling people close to them that they, themselves, will vote for Peter Obi for president? The evidence of this anomaly is visible in the fact that none of these contestants has been heard of recent, campaigning against Peter Obi’s presidential candidacy. They have seen a joke of a campaign turn into a movement which keeps growing day by day.
Before Peter Obi defected to LP, very strong candidates in major political parties in the South had already picked tickets in their parties for various elective positions. Many who lost out in their parties but had to quickly rush to pick tickets in Labour Party following Obi’s defection are not considered very popular or strong forces in their constituencies.
The last time I checked, almost all the governors in the Southeast and Southsouth are now either openly obidient or are nichodemously so. This delicate situation in the South is like odudu belu n’amụ or catch-22.
Labour Party and Obi’s campaign team must devise a way of swimming to win presidential votes for Obi in the South without getting wet by provoking the already obidient powerful politicians in other parties to fight for their political survival by working against Obi’s presidency if that is what they have to do to win. It’s a natural survival instinct.
Obi will become the president without a majority of legislators in the National Assembly as was the case in his first tenure as Anambra state governor. Subsequently, LP would receive strong defectors during President Obi’s second term.
It would become an inevitable strategy for Labour Party’s presidential campaign council to deploy its energy towards “Peter Obi for president” and not attack or campaign against the candidates of other parties for positions other than presidency in the surebanker states. Labour Party may have to allow its candidates for governorship, state assembly and national assembly to prove themselves in the field. This would be difficult but, it may boil down to that. Labour Party candidates for other elective positions will not like this but they have to live with this reality. They would be compensated if Peter Obi wins the presidency which is most probable.
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Supporters of Peter Obi for president who are not members of any political party can help save the day by urging the voters to vote Peter Obi for president and vote their preferred candidates for other positions irrespective of parties.
I have long decided to vote Peter Obi as president but would support candidates of other parties in the governorship, national assembly and state assembly elections. No one can talk me out of this conviction. My wife, my family members and many of my friends think in the same direction. We know that political parties in Nigeria have no distinct ideologies but are a mere vehicle to transport a candidate to a political post. A typical example is the fact that the current presidential candidate of PDP contested in the APC presidential primaries in 2014. Another example is that the current chairman of the ruling APC was a two-term governor of PDP just like the APC secretary that was a former PDP deputy governor. We all know that Peter Obi was also a two-term governor of APGA and had contested with Atiku of PDP in the 2019 presidential elections. Therefore, voting along party line is deceptive especially when the elected officials decamp and redecamp like monkeys jumping from one tree to another.
A mantra like, “In 2023 Elections, We Shall Vote for Individuals Not Party” will settle this conundrum or help remove the odudu from the amụ.
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