The Presidential flag bearer of the Labour Party (LP) in Nigeria’s just-concluded presidential election, Peter Obi says he won the poll and he will explore all legal options to reclaim his mandate.
“We will explore all legal and peaceful option to reclaim our mandate. We won the election and we will prove it to Nigerians,” Obi said at a press conference on Thursday in Abuja.
“I am challenging the process,” Obi declared to a room full of journalists at Nigeria’s capital city, his first media appearance after the declaration of a winner by the electoral umpire.
“This is very unfair. It is the least expected of Nigeria,” he said.
Read Obi’s full speech below;
Obi’s Full Speech:
Address to the Nation
1. On 25th February 2023, Nigerians trooped out en-masse to participate in what was promised and expected to be a free, fair and transparent Presidential and National Assembly elections. But in all things, we are enjoined to give thanks.
2. First to Almighty God for the privilege of making Datti Baba-Ahmed and I, the tools to champion the cause of a New Nigeria that will fundamentally enhance the fortunes of our dear country. Let me also appreciate and thank all Nigerians that participated in our last election especially those who believed and tirelessly worked for a New Nigeria and voted for us. My profound thanks go to the youths, ‘Obidients’ and support groups for your commitment and resilience for a better Nigeria. You truly showed that you can take back your country!
3. We continue to pray for the repose of the souls of all Nigerians killed during the campaigns and for those that were violently attacked, we pray for their quick recovery. We reiterate our total condemnation of such attacks and continue to demand that security agencies stop further attacks and bring perpetrators to book.
4. The commitment and resilience of Nigerians, even in the face of unwarranted and barbaric attacks is a testimony that a New Nigeria is Indeed POssible. The Lady, Jennifer Efidi who was stabbed but insisted on exercising her right to vote and indeed all Nigerians who voted during the election are the shinning stars leading us to a New Nigeria!
5. The election has been conducted and results announced as programmed. It is a clear deviation from the electoral rules and guidelines as we were promised and did not meet the minimum criteria of a free, transparent, credible and fair election devoid of voter intimidation and suppression, and late commencement of voting in some specific states.
6. This will probably go down as one of the most controversial elections ever conducted in Nigeria. The good and hardworking people of Nigeria have again been robbed by the institutions and leaders whom we trusted.
7. However, let me humbly and most respectfully appeal to all Nigerians to remain peaceful, law-abiding and conduct themselves in a most responsible manner. Please be assured that for Datti and I, and indeed for all of us, this is not the end, but the beginning of the journey to birth a New Nigeria.
8. Datti Baba-Ahmed and I remain absolutely undaunted and deeply committed to this project of a New Nigeria that will be built on honesty, transparency, fairness, justice and equity. All of these starts with the process -The process through which people are elected to office is as important (if not more important) than what they do thereafter with the office and authority.
9. If we seek to be called Your Excellency, then the process through which we are elected should also be excellent or sufficiently credible to generate the required confidence and moral authority to govern and lead. As you all know, the destruction of a society can be a gradual or sudden process through acts such as deliberate refusal to obey the rule of law and via the suppression of the will of the people.
10. Let me reiterate and assure my good people of Nigeria that we will follow all available legal and peaceful procedures to reclaim our mandate.
11. I urge you all to continue with your campaigns and troop out on Saturday 11th March 2023 to vote massively again for Labour Party-LP (Mama, Papa and Pikin) in the Governorship and State Assembly Elections. Please do not despair at a time when we can still achieve massive victories in the forthcoming elections on the 11th March 2023.
Thank you all and God bless The Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Mr Peter Obi
Labour Party Presidential Candidate
The All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate, Bola Tinubu polled 8,794,726 and was declared President-Elect 4am Wednesday by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The former Lagos State governor came out tops in 12 of Nigeria’s 36 states, and secured significant numbers in several other states to claim the highest number of votes — 8,794,726, almost two million votes more than his closest rival — former Vice President Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Atiku, 76, who has now run for president six times, got 6,984,520 votes, while Obi, who, in less than a year, galvanised young voters in a manner some have described as unprecedented finished the race with 6,101,533.
By his victory, APC’s President Muhammadu Buhari will hand over to his partyman, Tinubu after the expiration of his eight-year two-term on May 29, 2023.
Criticism, Calls For Poll Cancellation
The announcement of the results would not have happened if other candidates had their way.
Right from the election on Saturday, opposition parties had complained bitterly that INEC officials at the polling units were unable to upload election results electronically to the commission’s Results Viewing Portal (IReV), as stipulated by Section 60 of the Electoral Act 2022.
The IReV and the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) are new technologies introduced by the electoral body for the accreditation and electronic transmission of votes for this year’s polls.
The leadership of the APC, LP, and NNPP at several press briefings from Saturday to Tuesday had called on INEC and protested the manual transmission of results.
The parties said the results by INEC showed “monumental disparities” between what the party agents signed and what INEC officials announced in Abuja and asked Mahmood to respect the upload of results electronically as stipulated by recommended by the law.
They said the manual transmission of results compromised the integrity of the election process and demanded a cancellation of the election and asked the electoral chief to step down. They said the results announced by INEC were “irretrievably compromised”.
Opposition party agents had staged a walkout from the national collation centre in Abuja on Monday after the INEC chief insisted that the process must continue despite that all results were not electronically transmitted.
At a previous press conference on Tuesday, LP national chair said, “This election is not free and far from being fair”.
Similarly, former President Olusegun Obasanjo as well as leaders in the West African sub-region led by former Nigerian President, Goodluck Jonathan; ex-Ghanaian President John Mahama had before the declaration of results called on INEC to comply with the provisions of the Electoral Act 2022 on the collation of results for the presidential and National Assembly elections held on February 25, 2023.
However, INEC chairman, Mahmood Yakubu declared Tinubu as Nigeria’s President-Elect and handed him his Certificate of Return.
Source: Channels TV