AHEAD of the 2023 general elections, the Labour Party Presidential Council (LP-PC) and Anambra State governor Charles Soludo are engaged in a war of words over the presidential ambition of LP candidate Peter Obi.
Responding to Soludo’s latest attack on Obi, the LP campaign team on Tuesday, November 15, said the outburst of the Anambra State governor against the presidential candidate was full of fallacies.
Soludo had, in a lengthy article on Monday, criticised and dismissed the chances of the former Anambra State governor in the 2023 presidential election.
The clash between Soludo and Obi’s supporters ensued when, during an appearance on Channels TV’s ‘Politics Today’ on Thursday, November 10, the Anambra governor said the investments in Anambra State credited to Obi were worth ‘’next to nothing’’.
He said Obi was playing a game with his election bid as he did not have the necessary structure in place to win the presidency on the LP platform.
Following the comments, Obi’s supporters launched attacks on Soludo on various social media platforms.
Reacting, Soludo described the attacks on him as an exhibition of desperation and intolerance.
Soludo noted that the attempt to bully everyone who expressed the slightest dissent against Obi’s presidential bid was reprehensible.
He claimed there were suggestions that the Saturday attack in which five security personnel died in his community, Isuofia, in the Aguata Local Government Area of the state, was carried out by those provoked by his comment on the LP candidate.
The Anambra governor further cited the attack on the Archbishop of the Anglican Church of Nigeria, Enugu Ecclesiastical Province, Emmanuel Chukwuma by Obi’s supporters commonly known as ‘Obidients.’
He described as tyranny the attempt to muscle out those who were not in support of Obi’s presidential ambition, stressing that this attitude might endanger the future political and economic interests of the Igbos, if not checked.
While acknowledging the anger of some youths in urban cities and the Diaspora over the trajectory of the country and with the candidates of the major parties, the governor lectured his adversaries on the tenets of democracy, stating that the minority would have their say, but the majority their way.
According to him, translating anger and social media agitation into political outcomes requires humongous work.
Weighing the LP standard bearer’s chances in the forthcoming poll, the governor said, “Let’s be clear: Peter Obi knows that he can’t and won’t win. He knows the game he is playing, and we know, too; and he knows that we know.”
The governor conceded that the LP candidate would get some votes in his home state of Anambra, but noted that this would not take him anywhere.
Dismissing claims that he was envious of his predecessor, Soludo said he and Obi had been friends for a long time, adding that he vowed never to leave APGA for another party.
Reacting in a statement on Tuesday, the LP-PCP spokesperson Ndi Kato said while the party noted the glaring fallacies and misrepresentations in Soludo’s treatise, it has no interest in an extended argument with him.
She said the governor was attacking Obi so he could secure a possible alignment with the two major political parties in the country.
Kato said the LP and its candidate were too focused in their bid to rescue the nation from consumption to production to be distracted by Soludo’s diatribes.
“It seems obvious that Professor Soludo is itching for the limelight, in this election season, perhaps fired up by possible understanding or alliance with our struggling political opponents,” she said.
“While we note the glaring fallacies, misrepresentations, personal insinuations and signs of personal vendetta in that long writeup, neither His Excellency Peter Obi, The Obi-Datti Presidential Campaign Organisation, nor the Labour Party, for that matter, has any interest in an extended engagement with Prof Soludo this critical time when there is a bigger fish to fry.
“His Excellency Peter Obi has his work well cut out for him, this campaign season.
“Primarily, he is accelerating his reach-out and influence to all Nigerians, rural and urban, in all areas, regions and states; and firmly engaging them, on his critical and visionary plans to take the country from consumption to production.
“In doing this, Mr. Peter Obi is firmly placing the youths, intensive agricultural revolution, and revamping of critical areas of the economy as part of the focal points in the drive to turn around our fortunes and take back our country.
“We, the youths, spreading across partisan political lines, have found reason to place the highest level of trust and confidence in HE Peter Obi, and we are committed to continuing to a partnership with him, transparently, vigorously and creatively, to bring to fruition, the vital changes urgently required in this our country, of so much potential.
“We strongly believe that A New Nigeria is possible… and together with Peter Obi, we are working to make this a reality.
“This is our focus; this is our occupation and we shall not be distracted!”