Peter Obi’s Chances And Challenges

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Peter Obi’s Chances And Challenges

Peter Obi; Presidential candidate of the Labour Party

By Carl Umegboro

Former governor of Anambra state, Peter Obi is no doubt an archetype of leaders that the country, Nigeria needs to move to the next level. After dumping the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) recently, conceivably over coded moves to deny him a presidential ticket, Obi has emerged the standard bearer of the Labour Party (LP). By Obi’s profile alongside his visible achievements as the governor of Anambra from 2006 to 2014, without a doubt, the country will be in a safe hand with Obi as Nigeria’s President, all things being equal.

But the great challenge that will confront Obi is that his kind, Prof Kingsley Moghalu, a former governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and also from his home state, Anambra is flying the flag of the African Democratic Congress (ADC) as the standard bearer. The duo has the same class of supporters – the honest masses that earnestly desire nothing but good governance in the decaying nation. Any good political material must have a stronghold to start with, where it is unavailable or divided, it may raise a question.

Aside from the two, another credible personality, a former Chief Judge of Anambra State, Professor Peter Umeadi, has emerged as the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), one of Obi’s earlier parties. These three gentlemen from the same state have a similar profile and would likely attract the same class of the electorates. By implication, dividing the votes of their supporters is feasible. It must be noted that politics goes beyond securing a party’s ticket to become a flagbearer. Marketability and above all, acceptability of a candidate to the electorate is more important in an election than emerging a candidate. Politics is a game of numbers.

It must be noted that there is always political arithmetic to balance equations for a success in any election beyond acquiring a nomination form and endorsement as a candidate. For example, in some of the previous elections, APGA collaborated with PDP in the presidential election and therefore didn’t present a candidate except in other positions. This approach is important considering that politics is a game of numbers.

Suffice to say that if Obi or anyone of his likes will make a positive impact in the forthcoming election, there must be some checks and balances particularly forming a strong synergy with other like-minded in the race. Otherwise, they will end up dividing their votes in favour of other parties with large supporters and members. The three contenders from the same state that are like-minded but in different political parties must sit to agree on the way forward except they only wish to see their names in the ballot papers. There must be a unity of purpose and not selfishness. They must do a plus and minus. Very important.

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In the All Progressives Congress (APC) quarters, a former Minister of State for Education, former parliamentarian and a lawyer by profession, Hon Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba and also a former governor of Imo state, Rochas Okorocha are battling for the ticket of the party in the race for president. So at the moment, their fate is unknown. Also in the race are the incumbent Vice President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo, a senior advocate of Nigeria; former governor of Lagos and APC national leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, among others.

However, one thing is certain that political parties will always give tickets to the person with capacity, influence and credibility that can win the general election beyond sympathy. In other words, APC will inevitably submit to an aspirant that can match the main opposition party, the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) with its standard bearer, Atiku Abubakar, a former president.

Though PDP goofed by giving a ticket to a northerner to succeed President Muhammadu Buhari, a northerner who will complete the second term totaling 8 years in office on 29th May, 2023, PDP’s candidate, Abukakar is not a walkover. Irrefutably, Abubakar has structures and supporters across the nation. However, with the crisis ravaging the nation, allowing the power to go to the south after Buhari’s exit is imperative and a wise decision.

Some eloquent personalities from the northern region including Mallam Nasir El-rufai, governor of Kaduna State have spoken out, backing the shift of power to the south in the interest of the nation. This is creditable. There’s no region with a monopoly of capable hands and technocrats. Of course, the Nigerian Constitution didn’t expressly provide for rotational presidency, but as humans with thinking faculty, things should be done sensibly. That’s the way to go in a society with different ethnic groups and religion that is struggling to cohabit peacefully for sustainability of peace and harmony.

Umegboro, ACIArb is a public affairs analyst and social advocate (08023184542)

Published By: EDITOR

CARL UMEGBORO is a prolific writer, public affairs analyst and an Associate, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (United Kingdom). He holds a Bachelor of Laws degree (LLB Hons) and a renowned columnist in all national newspapers in Nigeria, Africa Press Reviews, TheWorldNEWS and numerous foreign media including Park Chester Times, New York, USA. Umegboro is a regular guest-analyst to many TV and radio programme on crucial national issues. To send your opinions, articles and reports to the Admin, contact: +234 (0) 802 318 4542, +234 (0) 705 710 1974, +234 (0) 817 318 4542. Email: carl@carlumegboro.com, umegborocarl@gmail.com

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