The Director-General of the Obi Presidential Campaign Organisation, Dr Doyin Okupe, has said that the planned alliance between the Labour Party and the New Nigerian People’s Party for the 2023 general election is long “dead.”
Okupe disclosed this on Tuesday while speaking on Politics Today on Channels Television, saying the plan had been dead since about four weeks ago.
“That discussion, or those discussions about a merger, alliance and all that were led by me from our side; it is dead – dead and buried,” he said .
“It is not Mr Peter Obi; the Labour Party and its presidential candidate have long since withdrawn from that conversation and it was NNPP that continued to try to benefit from the traction of the popularity of Obi. Out of maturity, I decided that we will not take them on media-wise, so we kept quiet, but they kept going on.”
The LP had planned an alliance with the NNPP, with Obi and the latter’s presidential candidate, Senator Rabiu Kwankwaso, being on the same ticket.
Okupe, who is the placeholder as running mate to the LP presidential candidate and former Governor of Anambra State, Peter Obi, said talks became deadlocked when the LP side queried the emergence of another Muslim northerner succeeding the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), a Muslim from the North.
On the reported consideration of Senator Ditti Baba-Ahmed as vice-presidential candidate of the LP, Okupe said, “He is being considered, others are being considered. These things will be decided this week. He is being considered along with other people whom we have engaged and we have talked with.
“The emphasis here is this, we are looking for a young, vibrant politician of northern extraction with a measure of intellect, sound background, pedigree and education. That is what we are looking at.”
Speaking on the claim by Kwankwaso of being senior Obi, Okupe asked how seniority is measured in politics.
He however took exception to Kwankwaso saying that northern electorate would not vote for presidential candidate from the South-East.