Peter Gregory Obi, the presidential candidate of the Labour Party, has expressed confidence in his victory in the February 25 presidential election. His optimism comes in the wake of the overwhelming reception he received during his Saturday campaign in Lagos State. A political rally that brought thousands from all across the state to show their support and determination to vote for the Labour Party presidential candidate.
In an exclusive interview with Arise TV on Sunday that was monitored by BusinessDay, the excited Obi expressed confidence that he could indeed surprise the naysayers with a victory at the polls.
He said, “I believe that this election is an existential election that calls for a generational change. For the first time in Nigeria, there is an opportunity for an election where a party that is facing an election is presenting people with character, competence, capability, compassion, and the physical and mental energy to do the job.
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“For the first time, you have a party chairman, presidential candidate, and vice presidential candidate who were born after independence.”
He insisted that a generational change is what is needed to move Nigeria forward. “We must have a generational change; we must build a new Nigeria,” he said. “That is what I am committed to. A Nigeria in which Nigerians would not say, “I’m from the east, west, north, or south; they would not say they are Muslims or Christians, but they are Nigerians, and they are happy.”
The former Anambra State governor said that when he becomes president, he is going to invest heavily in factors that unite us as a country—factors such as sports and entertainment. “That is why I am going to invest in entertainment, in sports, in all those factors that unite us. Make it productive, where people’s talent will match up with the opportunity. That is why I am going to go to the north and make sure that all those cultivated lands are cultivated and start pulling people out of poverty,” he explained.
He also made reference to the numerous industries in Kano that employed thousands of residents but have since been shut down.
When asked for his response about people who think he won’t gather enough votes in the north, the former governor of Anambra State said, “Because all they have been doing is contrive all those things that made them in the past win and subject them to poverty. Talk about their relationship, their ethnicity—but they’ve seen that it doesn’t work because they’re poorer despite following them like that, but we’re telling them that the election should not be about their religion.
“I will respect the religious diversity of Nigeria, and that is sacrosanct. And I believe that Christians and Muslims should live peacefully, and I must maintain that. If anybody is going to talk about their turn in the election, it is me, and I am not running because it is the turn of the Southeast. I am running because I am Peter Obi, who believes that I am the best candidate for the job.”
“The people of the southeast have never had the opportunity of serving Nigeria since its independence. Every other section had had the opportunity except us,” he said.