Why I am challenging presidential poll result, by Obi
Labour Party (LP) presidential candidate Peter Obi yesterday explained that he was challenging the outcome of the February 25 election because the “process was wrongly created by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to serve a particular purpose.”
He said he was doing so to change Nigerians’ recourse to “accepting what is wrong and unacceptable as God’s wish.”
Obi, however, clarified that he had no issues with the declaration of Asiwaju Bola Tinubu as the winner of the poll, but the process.
The former Anambra State governor, who came third in the election after Peoples Democratic Party(PDP), Atiku Abubakar, featured on Arise Television’s Morning Show.
He also spoke on Saturday’s governorship and Houses of Assembly elections as well as the ethnic tension arising from the loss of the All Progress Congress (APC) in the presidential poll to the LP in Lagos State.
Besides, the LP standard bearer flayed Governor Nyesom Wike for working against him in Rivers State.
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Obi, who urged his supporters to remain calm, also dismissed any partnership with the PDP in the process.
He said: “The journey so far has been very tough and difficult because I am trying to change what has kept us where we are now. So, it is going to be difficult.
“My appeal to Nigerians is to remain calm and prayerful for our country, Nigeria. We don’t have any other country apart from Nigeria.
“I am not challenging who they declared. I am not challenging the outcome, but the process and unless we do that, we are not going to change the rascality that happened.”
The former governor later clarified in a Tweet that he was also challenging the declaration of Tinubu as president-elect by INEC.
The tweet reads: “Following my response to a question while appearing on Arise TV earlier today(yesterday), I want to state categorically that at the Presidential Elections Tribunal(PET), I am challenging the INEC electoral process that led to the declaration of Tinubu as president-elect as well as the declaration itself.’’
The LP candidate told the Arise Morning Show panellists that Nigerians’ mentality for accepting what is wrong and unacceptable as God’s wish has kept Nigeria where it is.
He queried: “The problem of Nigeria is accepting what is unacceptable. That’s not God’s wish.
God’s wish is that you do the right thing. Is it God’s wish that we remain poor as a country despite his abundant blessings on us?”
Stressing that the Obidient Movement was in the system to create an egalitarian society, the former governor lamented that after 63 years as a nation, Nigeria has been unable to conduct a credible election.
Obi said while he was challenging the poll’s outcome through legal and peaceful means, it was disheartening that the rule of law was being treated with levity by INEC, a public institution maintained with taxpayer’s money.
Obi said some mischievous persons were trying to create an impression of ethnic tension in Lagos because LP defeated APC in the state.
He argued that more non-Igbos, including the Yoruba, who share the aspiration for a Nigeria, voted for him.
His words: “In the Southeast, it is a similar situation, people know me, people know what I stand for, people know I have kept my promises. People know I’ve kept to what I have said.
“It is a simple thing. People go about and say, oh! he got votes in Lagos because of the Igbos and I ask how many Igbos live in Lagos? I got more votes from indigenes in Lagos than those who you can call visitors.
“Are the Igbos more in Nasarawa, are the Igbos more in Plateau, are the Igbos more in Abuja?
“In Rivers State, where you know that the governor came out against me and everything, I still… If the real votes of Rivers were counted, I won. I had over 50 something per cent of the votes.
“The other two parties were sharing the remaining 50 per cent.”
The LP candidate explained that even if Igbos voted for him, it would not be the first time they were doing so for other persons.
He wondered why there was no brouhaha when the Igbo massively voted for Chief Olusegun Obasanjo even when he lost in his region and Dr. Goodluck Jonathan from the Southsouth.