Why Peter Obi is the best candidate for 2023


While it been said by many that in Nigeria, it is unlikely for a Presidential aspirant who is not running under the two major political parties to be a contender in the election.

However, the build up to the 2023 elections, the narrative seem to be taking a different turn.

Labour Party’s Presidential candidate, Mr. Peter Obi seems to be changing the paradigm and bringing a new wave into the Nigerian political arena. His cause is fast gathering momentum.

Obi’s supporters—the “Obi-dient,” as they take pride in being called—believe he is the chosen one, and their deep conviction that Obi stands apart from the political establishment which has only succeeded in giving Nigerians pseudo hope.

Much of the growing support for Obi among a cross section of disaffected young people is born out of understandable frustration with the system, specifically the fact that the presidential candidates of the two main political parties, Bola Tinubu of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and Atiku Abubakar of the opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP) are septuagenarians (both are seventy and seventy-five, respectively) perceived as symbolizing the business as usual brand of politics that has led the country to the brink of economic collapse.

While Obi is perceived as a much younger candidate, his growing list of supporters also invoke his decent, if not outstanding, record as two-time governor of Anambra State in the southeastern region, his experience in the private sector before he entered party politics, and what appears to be his personal tenacity.

Above all, they like his often self-inflating rhetoric. Of the major candidates in next year’s election, Obi is the only one who seems to grasp that the country’s problems require more than the usual band-aid, who seems to understand that the country will have to dream big, and who appears ready to make the political sacrifices necessary to accomplish these goals. He has vowed to turn the economy around by reducing dependence on oil, cut down the cost of governance, and eliminate petroleum subsidies which he decries as “financing inefficiency.”

Heading into the year 2023, the emergence of Peter Obi has given Nigerians a new lease of hope, an assurance of a better Nigeria if the right candidates are elected based on the principles of merit and quality.

Also the emergence of Datti Baba-Ahmed as his running mate is one which was welcomed by Nigerians as a new change to the norm.

Datti Baba-Ahmed, 53, is perceived as one of the few politicians in Nigeria without much “dirt” in their political career, despite a controversial stint at the Senate that ended within a year after his election was upturned by the court.

Peter Obi’s decision to choose Mr Baba-Ahmed as his running mate is seen by some as a way of avoiding more popular politicians burdened by allegations of corruption.

Baba-Ahmed is from a rich family with good standing in Northern Nigeria. While his “clean” image may be an asset for the Labour Party.

An economist and banker, Mr Baba-Ahmed is known for many things but his disdain for corruption is what endears him to many people. In 2006, he was one of the federal lawmakers who frustrated the infamous third term move of then President Olusegun Obasanjo and in 2021, he called for a special prayer against corruption.

His candidature with Mr Obi is also being seen as a convergence of intellectuals.

If there’s anything which the people are hoping to change come 2023, it is not just the leadership of the nation, but also to change the narrative that it’s political parties who win election, the people are pushing to ensure that power truly belongs to them, and that they alone not party structures give Power.

Femi Adeniyi

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