Political economist Prof Pat Utomi has debunked rumours that he, alongside other prominent Nigerians, are planning to announce the formation of a new political party on October 1.
Utomi has recently been linked in the media with a “third force,” called Rescue Nigeria Project (RNP) to give the electorate an alternative platform to the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Apart from Utomi, founders of RNP include former Kwara Governor Ahmed Abdulfatai; former Minister of Education Prof. Tunde Adeniran; former Cross River Governor Donald Duke; Senator Lee Maeba; former House of Representatives member Usman Bugaje; former National Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission(INEC) Prof. Attahiru Jega; Amb. Nkoyo Toyo, Yomi Awoniyi, Dr. Rose Idi Danladi and Dr. Sadiq Gombe among others.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) was recently reported as saying that 95 groups have recently applied to be registered as political parties.
But Utomi, who spoke on the sidelines of a press conference announcing winners of the Year 2020 Zik Prize in Leadership Awards organised by the Public Policy Research & Analysis Centre (PPRAC), was hesitant to describe the movement as a political party.
He said the group and similar others were more interested in getting competent leaders into office, irrespective of the political party platform.
“No, I don’t think it (Third Force) is going to be a political party. We need to gather some of these movements, moving towards a better society,” Utomi said.