Peter Obi And The Other Presidential Candidates

Peter Obi And The Other Presidential Candidates


The Conversation this week is back to back on the current wave of the moment as it relates to the Presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Mr Peter Obi with his followers, the ‘Obi-Dient’ population.

I was planning to write something else until the two online polls results came out and gave an edge to the same man despite the initial insinuations that he has no viable structure to actualize his ambition.

The last editions of The Conversation received unprecedented private comments and chats, most of which I believe are his usual ‘Obi-Dient’ structure. I remember vividly some of them requesting that I should send the write up to them privately as it captured the matter under discussion succinctly. Maybe some of them never believed that such analysis can come from my table, based on my ‘perceived’ affiliation as it relates to political matters. For clarity of purpose, I don’t put my personal view into what is turning out.

Now that we are here again, let the conversation begin as we head towards the official unveiling of the political campaign. The poll has been released and has no doubt received several criticisms from the parties involved and even from the general public. For me the poll is too good to believe and rely on as the person given the lead should not relent on his effort if at all it will make him emerge as the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Since the coming of Peter Obi into the race, there is no doubt that the whole dynamics about the campaign has changed with the traditional regions now under serious threat. Another amazing thing about him despite his slogan “We no dey give shishi’ has fanatical supporters both online and in physical states. This no doubt has posed a major threat to the candidates of the ruling APC and main opposition PDP despite their dominance in the political scene. The way and manner his campaign is going calls for concern and this no doubt has made them sit tight to face the stack reality.

Although Peter Obi is adjudged to be leading, the big question to ask is how he converts this into votes. It is another thing to lead in online polls and another to convert into reality. Apart from the usual criticism he is known for, and turning out figures most of which have question marks, what strategy does he intend to use to lead the traditional political party in the race? We are yet to read and see a well thought-out party manifesto, as it goes beyond meeting with the Labour union bureaucrats.

Instead of going the usual way, one expects him by now to be offering practical solutions to the peculiar challenges thus insecurity, inflation, infrastructure, high level of unemployment etc offering practical way forward will no doubt further win more people to his side but failure to do that would scale up other parties acceptance once the campaign begins.

There is no doubt that he has all it takes to actualize the poll result, the big question is whose hands will that actually happen? Who are the main canvassers that he has across regions? What will the campaign structure really look like and what is the pedigree of other candidates for other offices under the same party.

With the recent high inflation rate, continuous increase in poverty level, high cost of living with no major sector driving the economy, the country needs a saviour. Peter Obi is being projected to be best to tackle this, but no basic indicator that he has his team ready to deliver on this urgent need to save this nation. One expects more robust engagement, practical ways and not being conservative with the ‘how’, the “How” is what many undecided voters are waiting for.

It’s no doubt a case of Peter Obi and the rest of the candidates; the question is when are we going to start having the required distinctions that won him those polls? Do these polls take into cognizance the mentioned factors as we should not quickly forget the wave that brought in the APC and President Buhari. Records have it that, the same way he led several polls, and when he eventually won the expected deliverables was not given basically because of any structure to work with. There is therefore the need to query the outcome of the polls so as not to end up with the same factors that affected Buhari’s performance despite the high expectation at the inception.

Also other candidates need to take advantage of these variables and several uncertainties by telling us what they have in stock and not their antecedents as the same Buhari’s antecedents brought us thus far.

There is thus a need to square up with Peter Obi and drop this Ziggy idea of campaign. The campaign is expected to be issue-based; they should be ready to prove to us what they want to do differently and no more queries about education, religion and place of origin.

We have seen defeat of the Southern Governors’ Forum agitation for power shift with the emergence of the PDP candidate. Of whose advantage or disadvantage is that over time? These and several others are expected to be major factors between Peter Obi and the rest of the candidates. Dominating a zone, while others have no breakthrough in the same zone despite their existing political structures further calls for caution as to the nature of what we will have come 2023. Now, let them get set to roll out the drum.

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