2023 elections

February 4, 2023

PDP should apologize to Peter Obi over speculated merger  –  Group 

A public policy think tank, the Neo Africana Centre, has expressed dismay over the disinformation making the rounds that some presidential candidates in the February 25 polls are in merger talks with the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP with a view to withdrawing from the race in favour of the PDP presidential candidate. 

In a statement by its Director of Public Affairs, Jenkins Udu, said while the Centre has always sneered at such insinuations, it was deeply alarmed when Mr Peter Obi, the presidential candidate of the Labour Party, was touted as one of those considering withdrawing from the race for Atiku Abubakar of the PDP.

According to the Centre, such an unholy rumour is viewed with utmost disgust. It called on Nigerians to shun desperate politicians who want to ride on the back of falsehood to score a cheap political point. 

It also said that it is convinced that nation-wreckers are trying to hide under the veneer of politics to unleash anarchy and confusion on the system. To this end, the body wants the electorate to be vigilant and shun desperate campaigners and their antics.

The Centre wondered why anybody who wants genuine change in the country will sidestep issues of national importance and dwell instead on rumors and falsehood.

The statement reads in part, “As a body interested in issues of democracy , public policy and good governance, we find such an unfounded rumor distracting and mischievous . It aims at diverting attention from the germane issues that should form the fulcrum of the campaigns and dwells instead on inanities and rumour-mongering. This is an act of desperation which should be shunned by well meaning Nigerians.

“We would have indulged the fancies and fantasies of the desperate campaigners if they had chosen to use in vain the names of the presidential candidates that cannot be taken too seriously in the race. 

“But to insinuate that a frontline presidential candidate like Peter Obi is considering withdrawing from the race is the height of absurdity. It is an assault on the psyche of Obi’s teeming supporters. Such cheap rumours can only appeal to the shallow imagination of its purveyors.

“May we alert Nigerians to the fact that the campaigns have entered a crucial endgame. At a time like this, desperadoes and buccaneers are bound to foul the atmosphere. This is already being seen in the dirty, drag-out fight between the presidential campaign councils of the All Progressives Congress and the Peoples Democratic Party. 

“The unfounded rumours bordering on mergers and withdrawals could be another layer of this act of desperation. Nigerians should be vigilant lest unpatriotic elements drag them into the pit of hell.

“In the light of the foregoing, we call on the leadership of the PDP to, as a matter of honour, disclaim the toxic rumour and set the records straight. It should, particularly, apologize to Peter Obi over the embarrassing insinuation. This is the least that we expect from a political party that wants the people to entrust it with the leadership and destiny of the country,” it said.