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2023 Presidential Elections Is About Character And Competence, Not Your Turn, Peter Obi Tells Tinubu

The Presidential candidate of Labour Party, Mr Peter Obi, has said next year’s Presidential election is not based on ethnicity or religion, hence it is nobody’s turn.

Speaking at the Labour Party Leadership Retreat in Abuja on Monday, Obi promised to sign a performance agreement with the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) to make sure that ideas generated at the retreat are followed to the latter.

Apparently referring to the Presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Ahmed Tinubu, Obi insisted that since there was no place where Christians or Muslims buy things cheaper, or Yoruba or Hausa’s have free light than others in the country, then the coming election is about character and competence and not any body’s turn.

Tinubu, at a meeting with Kogi Governor Yahaya Bello, on June 11, 2022 ad-libbed his now clichéd “Emi lokan” coinage, a Yoruba expression which literally translates to “It’s my turn.”

He first mouthed the slogan in Abeokuta few days before his party’s presidential primary election to underscore his entitlement to the ticket, having helped others, including President Muhammadu Buhari achieve his present political office. 

But the Labour Party standard bearer said: “We will do this retreat now. After election, we will do another one. Election next year will not be based on ethnicity. We have had it before. It would not be on religion.

“There is no place that Christians buy things cheaper, there is no place that Muslims buy things cheaper. It will not be by my turn, it is nobody’s turn. It must not be by connection. Election next year must be based on character and trust, it must be based on competence.”

The Presidential candidate also stated that corruption is pervasive in Nigeria because leaders are involved.

According to him, “if a leader is not stealing, and the family around him are not stealing, we will reduce corruption by 70 percent. I was Governor for eight years, there is no where money is missing.

“I am in this retreat to listen. Let us put it in writing. When we succeed, you must be around to say this is what we have agreed on. Even if we don’t achieve 100 per cent, we must have made sacrifices.”

In his welcome address, Barrister Julius Abure, National Chairman Labour Party, said Nigeria now a golden opportunity to redefine how politics should be played, saying that the present challenges were due to failure of leadership.

“Our leaders does not have what it takes to drive development. This is what has been lacking, no one is safe, insecurity has taken over something needs to be done and urgently and I am happy Nigerians are ready for the real change not like the APC change in 2015.”

He said he was happy that Nigerians are joining the Labour Party on a daily basis and urged NLC, Trade Union Congress and all Labour affiliates to join hands, adding this is an opportunity that should not be allowed to waste.

Comrade Ayuba Wabba, President Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), on his part said Nigerians cannot continue to be a consumer nation, “we need to go back to production, which will tackle unemployment. Corruption is an organized crime against the Nigerian public.”

He said protest and strike alone cannot fix Nigeria and called on workers to be ready to work to bring about good leadership in the country instead of strike and protest.

Wabba said leadership is about energy and intellectual capacity and explained that those saying Labour Party do not have structure will be surprised, adding that Labour is ready to activate its structures in the 774 local government areas of the country.

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