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LP National convention not all-inclusive — Obi-Datti

The chief spokesperson for the Obi-Datti campaign organisation, Yinusa Tanko, said the just-concluded national convention of the Labour Party which returned Abure as the national chairman was not all-inclusive.

 

Tanko who so stated in an interview on Channels TV’s Sunrise Daily on Monday, disclosed that the national chairman of the party, Julius Abure, dismissed the advice of the party’s presidential candidate, Peter Obi, for an all-inclusive convention.

According to him, the current crisis rocking the Labour Party could have been prevented if the leadership had taken Obi’s advice.

Tanko said, “His Excellency, Peter Obi, made concerted efforts in trying to intervene at any point we have this particular issue and trying to improve.

“When the issue of the national convention came up, he (Obi) suggested to the national chairman that, because we are bigger now, we need to have a wider consultation:

“(We need to) meet with responsible and interested people such as the TUC and NLC, stakeholders, the Obidient group – young generation people who are interested in seeing Nigeria work. Meet with leaders who have different ideas that can midwife us into a greater height.

“All of these were the suggestions that he (Obi) made. And not only did he make those suggestions, he practicalised them because he met with the members of the National Assembly.

“He (Obi) met with the leadership of the party recently in Asaba trying to give them ideas on how he thinks certain things could be done and you could improve our situation.

“But of course, you know how politics is. Sometimes, people may be trying to encourage people, but they do something different.

“You can only take a horse to the river, but you cannot force it to drink water. So that’s exactly what Peter Obi has done. He has done so greatly to see if we can find a solution to some of the problems we find ourselves in,” he said.

Tanko further stated that while Abure has the right to contest the national chairmanship position again, it is only proper that the right things are done by opening the door for more people to be part of the process.

He said Abure went outside an initial agreement to have an all-inclusive national convention, which ought to start from the ward, local government and state levels before the national level.

The Obi-Datti spokesperson said the convention held in Nnewi Anambra State that returned Abure as the party’s leader did not conform with that agreement and, therefore, was not acceptable to everyone within the party.

When asked if the crisis in the party could be a problem for Obi in the next election, Tanko said Obi is a brand of his own.

He added that he and other people will always move with him wherever he goes.

Recall that at the convention of the Labour Party held on March 27 in Nnewi, Abure was re-elected as the National Chairman for a second term by a unanimous affirmation of delegates despite strong opposition by the Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC.

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had also said none of its officials monitored the convention, while the party’s Board of Trustees insisted that Abure’s tenure had expired.

Prior to the controversial convention, the NLC called for Abure’s resignation as party chairman and the immediate constitution of a caretaker transition committee to organise a legitimate and all-inclusive national convention for the party.

 

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