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2023: Peter Obi to announce running mate July 8; Why alliance talks with Kwankwaso collapsed – Okupe

Dr Rabiu Kwankwaso (left) and Mr. Peter Obi

ABUJA –  Peter Obi, presidential candidate of Labour Party, will on Friday July 8, announce his running mate for the 2023 presidential election.

Dr Doyin Okupe, interim vice presidential candidate and director-general of Peter Obi’s campaign organisation, made this known in an interview on Channels Television current affairs programme, Politics Today on Tuesday night.

Okupe also said the inability of the Labour Party (LP) presidential candidate, Peter Obi or his counterpart of the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP), Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso to be a running mate to the other, was the major reason for the collapse of the alliance talks between the two political parties.

There were hopes that the two political parties would arrive at an alliance to constitute a formidable force against the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2023 general elections.

According to Okupe, the chances of an alliance between Obi, former Anambra State governor and Kwankwaso, former Kano State governor, seemed impossible because of this intractable factor.

 “That discussion, or those discussions about a merger, alliance and all that were led by me from our side; it is dead – DEAD and buried,” he said.

He stressed that the Labour Party and its presidential candidate had long since withdrawn from that conversation, adding that “it was NNPP that continued to try to benefit from the traction of the popularity of Obi. Out of maturity, I decided that we will not take them on media-wise, so we kept quiet, but they kept going on.”

“The talk for an alliance had been dead for over four weeks,” he stressed. “I am the leader of the team that went to discuss with Kwankwaso’s team, and it was dead.

“The moment I asked them one single question: would they consider it appropriate and okay for a president of northern extraction and Muslim to finish eight years and another Muslim northerner from the next state to take over?

“And they said there is nothing wrong with that; as far as I’m concerned, the discussion was over and it has remained over since then.”

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