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2023: Jonathan happy with Obi, urges him to make unity of Nigeria top priority

Peter Obi (left) with Jonathan in Otuoke, Bayelsa State on Friday

YENAGOA (Sundiata Post) – Mr. Peter Obi, presidential candidate of the Labour Party, has received a special request from former President Goodluck Jonathan to make unity of Nigeria his top priority if Nigerians give him the mandate in 2023.

Former President Jonathan’s request came when the LP flag bearer paid him a courtesy call in his country home in Otuoke, Bayelsa State, on Friday.

He commended Obi for conducting his campaign well with cultured utterances and encouraged him to continue the good work.

“I want to thank you that you are the first presidential candidate to pay a courtesy visit to me. I want to use this opportunity to encourage you in what you are doing.

According to the former President “For Nigeria to move forward we need unity. There were predictions in the late 1950s and early 1960s that Nigeria and some other countries would be at par, and we normally ask ourselves why are we where we are now. This was predicted by intellectuals, people who study the world and predicted that Nigeria, India, Brazil etc but all those countries left us but we are still where we are. We Nigerians must ask ourselves one question, why are we not able to move with others”.

The Immediate past Nigeria leader bemoaned the level of ethnic sentiments in the country, noting that “In terms of tribal and religious sentiments, they are almost in every nation but the degree we have in Nigeria is very debilitating. It is what is pushing us backwards.

“We have a country that we do not believe in. Most of our leaders would say Nigeria is not a nation. We have different nationalities, geographical expression but I believe that the young people, especially if we must move forward must put those sentiments aside. Every nation, every country have their own history.”

Jonathan said that the country would be great only if every Nigerian see himself as a Nigerian. “We must see ourself as one. And if I am the President, if the best person to hold a particular office is from Enugu, Ibadan, Sokoto, it doesn’t matter. And until we get to that point as a nation, we cannot move anywhere. We have been putting square pegs in round holes because of religious, tongues and tribal sentiments”

He then charged the former Anambra state governor, “if by divine providence you win the election, your first responsibility is to unite Nigeria. Without unity we cannot solve our security problems. Without unity we cannot solve our economic problems. If you unite Nigeria, that is the beginning of a new Nigeria, and the revolution and the development that will take place.

“I have been listening to comments from political leadership and sometimes our supporters do more damage on our behalf. And I must commend you because your utterances so far have not shown any division. Just keep doing what is right. If you win, you will be a president for the whole nation, you won’t be a President for any group of people.

In his own remarks, the LP standard bearer praised Jonathan for what he represents in the country. “Nobody can talk about peace, unity today without reference to you, all we have been preaching throughput our campaign is that we want to unite”, Obi said.

“Our goal if elected is to ensure that Nigeria moves back where her per-capita was a few years before. All these are in reference to you so I am here personally as your own junior brother to pay respect and loyalty. I am sure you must have endorsed your own,” he concluded.

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