THE aggrieved presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP) Peter Obi has restated his claim that his party won the 2023 president trial elections conducted on February 25 despite the contrary announcement of the electoral commission.
Addressing a press conference in Abuja on Thursday, he vowed that he will explore all legal and peaceful means to prove that LP won the election, noting that, “they asked us to go the court, remember I am an ‘Obedient’, I will go to court. We won the election. Datti and I are committed to the mandate of Nigerians.”
At the International Collation Centre in Abuja, the chairman of INEC, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, announced that Tinubu polled 8,794,726 votes, won 12 states; former vice president and the presidential candidate of the PDP, Atiku Abubakar got 6,984,520 votes and also won 12 states, while Obi got 6,101,533 votes and won in 11 states, including Abuja.
Although he refused to answer questions on how he will prove his case, he echoed the position of LP that most of its members were systematically disenfranchised across the country.
He stated: “Nigerians especially the youths believed in and worked tirelessly for a new Nigeria. Gratitude to the Obidients, those who believed a new Nigeria is possible and I say to them a new Nigeria is possible and we will work for that new Nigeria that is possible.
“The commitment and silence of Nigerians even in the face of unwarranted panic attacks is a testimony that a new Nigeria is indeed possible. Look at people like lady Jennifer who was stabbed and still went on to vote then that gives me the courage to believe that a new Nigeria is indeed possible.”
He expressed shocked over the steady decline of numbers noting that the number of voters in the 2023 election reduced sharply by 20 per cent despite the increase in the number of registered voters and persons who collected their permanent voter card (PVC) in 2023.
To explain the development, Obi said that it was “due to manipulation and removal of votes here and there. We have chosen that we will challenge this rascality for the future of this country, Nigeria can’t conduct credible elections after 63 years of independence, it’s something we should all reflect on.”
The party had since the collation of the result faulted the process and the eventual outcome.
In an earlier statement on Sunday, the party’s National Secretary, Alhaji Umar Farouk Ibrahim claimed that members of the party were prevented from voting and chased away at polling units, or had ballot papers and boxes destroyed and burnt in others, acts which contravened the 2002 Electoral Act as amended.
Umar had also noted that, “the delay by INEC to upload and announce results, especially where Labour Party, is already known to have taken lead, is also worrisome and we feel it is deliberate to anger our party and our supporters.”
He had called on party members and supporters to remain law abiding and mobilise for the governorship and houses of assembly elections.