Northern Nigerian Breaking News

ANALYSIS: Will Atiku, Obi alliance stop Tinubu’s re-election in 2027?

On Monday, May 13, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar and the 2023 presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) held a closed-door meeting with the presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi, in Abuja.

The social media went agog as the duo were meeting for the first time since the last General election. In a bid to strengthen alliance talk with PDP, Obi also met with a former governor of Jigawa State, Sule Lamido, and former Senate President, Bukola Saraki. 

Before joining LP in 2022 to pursue his presidential ambition, Obi was a top member of the PDP. In 2019, both Atiku and Obi ran on the PDP joint ticket but were defeated by former President Muhammadu Buhari of the APC.

However, due to internal conflicts, Obi, who served as Atiku’s running mate in 2019, left the PDP for LP. He later became a third force, coming third behind Atiku in the February 23 presidential election, which was won by Bola Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress.

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Meanwhile, political pundits widely blamed Obi for the defeat of the PDP in the last election, arguing that he depleted the voting power of the PDP. The pundits argued that Atiku’s 6,984,520 votes and Obi’s 6,101,533 votes would have secured victory against Tinubu, who garnered 8,794,726 votes.

Speaking during an interview on Seun Okinbaloye’s Mic On podcast, Paul Ibe, the spokesperson Atiku, blamed the current Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, Nyesom Wike, for Obi’s defection from the PDP. 

“Atiku did not force Peter Obi out of the party, Wike was instrumental in the exit of Obi because Wike had promoted the zoning of the presidency to the south. Atiku Abubakar had said that he was prepared to get himself off the ticket if the party zoned the ticket to the Southeast. Wike frustrated that effort because he believed that if it was zoned to the south, not the southeast, he would be in the best position to be able to get the ticket.”

Following Monday’s meeting, the Deputy National Youth Leader of the PDP, Timothy Osadolor, said Nigerians were eagerly anticipating political unity among opposition parties to remove President Tinubu from power in 2027.

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“It’s positive to see these leaders coming together to challenge President Tinubu in the 2027 election. They will work to save and restore the nation. More of these meetings are necessary to strengthen unity among opposition parties. They must do everything lawfully possible to rescue Nigeria.

“With PDP’s acting National Chairman, Umar Damagum, overseeing these developments, I am convinced that the PDP leadership is supporting Atiku, Saraki, and Lamido. Thus, I believe that this report aims to unite the PDP and other major groups into a single force capable of not only defeating the APC-led Federal Government but also stabilizing the economy and improving Nigeria’s functionality.”

On the other hand, sources close to Obi said the LP leader sees Atiku as his leader and his major concern is ensuring that Nigeria moves forward. Also, LP National Publicity Secretary, Obiora Ifoh, said “Obi and Atiku are people who see that Nigerians are suffering, not receiving what they bargained for, and observe corruption persisting in high places while Nigeria’s resources are mismanaged.

“They believe it’s the right time to unite and take action to address the challenges facing Nigeria today. Despite the government being barely a year old, Nigeria is facing difficult times under the APC administration, which seems directionless.

This meeting is just the beginning; there will be further interactions and gatherings with other individuals. Together, they will brainstorm on how to rescue the nation. The party is fully aware of the meeting and is committed to working hard to achieve something significant for our country.”

Meanwhile, the National Publicity Director of the APC, Bala Ibrahim, claimed that Obi’s meeting with Atiku and others is nothing to make the APC lose its sleep.

READ ALSO: ANALYSIS: Will Atiku, Obi alliance stop Tinubu’s re-election in 2027?

“They are free to meet. But as they are meeting, so is the APC with a view to strengthening our support base to woo more people, based on the dividend of democracy extended to them by the president and our party. You talked about the party being under pressure. How? These are parties that are increasingly losing grip and support. They are probably in a panic.

Now, they want to sit and look at what to do with a view to increasing their support base ahead of 2027. But that is too long a time to go,” he said in a interview with Punch. 

“This is also not to say we are going to be sleeping between now and when the time comes. We don’t talk about crossing the bridge until we get there. By that time, if they feel like coming out to merge, that will even be better for democracy. But whatever they resolve by 2027, we are going to beat them hands down.”


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