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Full Text of Mr Peter Obi’s CNN Interview with Zane Asher



Labour Party (LP) presidential candidate, Peter Obi says  the problems facing Nigeria are not ones that can be solved overnight but believes the challenges can be solved by a competent leader with the required commitment.  Obi made the disclosure during his appearance on American media corporation Cables News Network (CNN).

Full text of the Interview:

Zane Asher >> Mr. Obi thank you so much for being with us. You’re certainly the most popular presidential candidate among young people in Nigeria, there’s so much momentum behind you. But here’s the problem. Nigerians are used to being disappointed by their leaders, and what do you think about some of the problems that are facing the country right now, they are systemic. I’m talking about the corruption, I’m talking about oil theft, I’m talking about insecurity, I’m talking about the fiscal hole that Nigeria is in right now. Can all of that really be solved by one person?
Peter Obi >> Well, if you have a leader that is competent, has the capacity and commitment to start dealing with these challenges, you’re not going to solve it overnight, but there will be a clear, visible, measurable attempt to deal with these. And there is nothing that is not solve-able. Some issues just have to be dealt with decisively. But you need to have a capable leader such that when you look at his past records in office, you can say YES – He is capable.
Zane Asher >> If you do, indeed, become Nigeria’s next president, Nigeria you know, is broke. It’s barely able to service its debts. It spends so much more that it earns. What are your plans? From a concrete perspective, what are your plans to take Nigeria’s economy off of life support?
Peter Obi >> Well, a variety of things. One, is that we have to deal decisively with the issue of insecurity. It’s impacting negatively on our economy. We have to deal with it head on. We have to get our finances right — and start ensuring that the vast lands of the north are invested in and cultivated. We have to start pulling people out of poverty as quickly as possible. We have to immediately reduce aggressively, the cost of governance, and the issue of corruption.
Zane Asher >> Anyone who knows anything about Nigeria knows that it has this embarrassing reputation of importing refined fuel, despite the fact that it’s Africa’s largest oil producer. What is your plan for transforming Nigeria’s economy from a consumption economy to a production economy?
Peter Obi >> Let me tell you it’s not the issue of refineries not working — there’s no reason why we should not encourage the private sector to operate refineries. It can be done as quickly as possible. We can today, decide to remove the oil subsidies, and use the resources to invest in and support the principal areas of production; from critical infrastructure to education, to supporting investment in refinery, which will be, done in the shortest amount of time.
Zane Asher >> A lot of Nigerian presidents have come in and talked about revitalizing the manufacturing sector, investing in refineries, but change, as you know, has been very, very slow. Why is it going to be different with you and what would you say were the biggest hurdles in making sure that all of the things that you just listed come to pass?
Peter Obi >> Well, what people need to do is to look at what I promised as the state governor. When I said was going to turn around education, health, pull people out of poverty, bring sanity and civility in governance — did that happen or not?
When I said we were going to save money, did we do that? Yes, we did.
Zane Asher >> I want to talk about one of the major issues that Nigeria is dealing with, grappling with right now. That’s violence and insecurity. You can barely travel from one part of Nigeria to another without fearing for your life. I’m talking about kidnapping. I’m talking about banditry. I’m talking about terrorism, I’m talking about Boko Haram. What is your plan for that?
Peter Obi >> Initially, what we first have to deal with is the issue of security. Unless you have security, the farmers can’t — you can’t have investment. Nobody will ever want to put or invest money in an insecure country. So we will deal this issue of insecurity decisively. We will start by reorganizing our security architecture. We will then bring in more hands into the security system, and motivate them properly, so that we can defeat the issue of insecurity . It’s the most important thing that Nigeria needs today.
Zane Asher >> You and I are both Nigerians, were are both from southeastern Nigeria. It’s a very hard country to hold together. You have too manage about 200 million people, with so many different tribes, so many different ideas. When you think about the fact that you are from the southeast, how easy is it going to be to rally Nigerians from the north behind you? That’s got to be on your mind?
Peter Obi >> That was the situation obtainable in the past. We used to elect leaders based on ethnicity, religion, strong connection etc, and that has brought us to the bad situation we are in today. “Our structure”, the structure of criminality, is what we want to dismantle now. We want to ensure that the next election is based on character, capacity, competence, commitment to do the right thing. Nigeria not just in a fiscal mess, it is at the last stage to collapse. The people in the north don’t have a secure place, they don’t have good roads. They don’t buy bread cheaper than those in the South. They people in the south are facing the same issues. All what you hear about ethnicity, religion, connection, is an elite conspiracy to keep Nigeria undeveloped. But now we’ve reached the edge.
Zane Asher >> Thank you for coming on our program.
Peter Obi >> Thank you for inviting me.

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Tribunal verdict, victory for democracy and Enugu, says Gov Mbah



Enugu State Governor, Dr Peter Mbah

…extends hands of fellowship to opposition
…restates commitment to campaign promises

Governor of Enugu State, Dr. Peter Mbah, has lauded the decision of the Enugu State Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal, which dismissed the petitions of the Peoples Redemption Party (PRP) and the Labour Party (LP) candidates challenging his victory in the March 18, 2023 governorship election, describing the decision as victory for democracy and the people of Enugu State.

Dr. Mbah, who also extended hands of fellowship to the opposition candidates and their political parties, said the task to build Enugu remained a collective one, adding that he was committed to working with all, irrespective of political persuasions.

The tribunal chaired by Justice Kudirat Akano, had earlier in the day dismissed the petitions of the governorship candidate of the PRP, Chris Agu, and the candidate of the LP, Chijioke Edeoga.

Addressing the state, at the Government House, Enugu, Mbah said: “This is another memorable day in the anal of our dear state, as the Enugu State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal affirmed the mandate, which you freely gave to us on 18th of March this year.

“This is victory for Ndi Enugu. It is also victory for democracy.

“It is a victory for massive development for Ndi Enugu. It is a victory for exponential growth for Ndi Enugu. It is a victory for Enugu’s greatness. It is a victory for the ban on Monday sit-at-home. It is also victory for our determination to restore water in all your homes in the next 68 days”.

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While thanking God for making the victory possible, Dr. Mbah also commended the tribunal for painstakingly dissecting the petitions and “for coming out with fair and just decision that resonates with Ndi Enugu”.

According to him, “the verdict has further strengthened our confidence in the judiciary as the temple of justice and the last hope of the common man”.

Extending hands of fellowship to his opponents, Mbah said: “There is time for everything under the sun. There is time to strive and time to unite. We all put ourselves forward to serve Ndi Enugu. The people have spoken and the tribunal has also affirmed. If service was the motivation, then it is time to rise above partisanship and come together because there is so much work to be done.

“Our arms are wide open and I beckon on my brothers, who ran this race with us, to join us in the onerous task of building a new Enugu State of our dreams.

“In the same vein, I enjoin all our supporters to be magnanimous in victory. Politics is over. Governance began on 29th May when we were inaugurated. It is time to unite”.

Governor Mbah, who reiterated his resolve to deliver on his campaign promises, further stressed that the tribunal’s decision was an elixir to do more, and urged the people to hold him to account on those promises.

“Once more, I immensely thank the good people of Enugu State, who not only believed in us, but also vested their mandate in us. Above all also above, they have stood by us every step of the way.

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“I want to assure them that I will work for them with every fibre of my being. I stand by every campaign promise I made as espoused in our Statement of Purpose. I also stand by the Citizens Charter that I executed on my first day in office. The Enugu people should hold me to account. I will not let them down”, he concluded.

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BREAKING: Tribunal dismisses Edeoga, LP’s petition, affirms Mbah’s election as Enugu Governor



Enugu State Governor, Dr. Peter Mbah

…Edeoga’s petition lacks merit

The Enugu State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Enugu has upheld the election of Dr. Peter Mbah of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as the winner of the March 18 election in the state.

Chijioke Edeoga of the Labour Party (LP) had approached the tribunal to challenge the declaration on the grounds that Mbah wasn’t qualified to stand for the election.

He alleged that he forged his National Youth Service Corps, NYSC certificate and cases of over-voting in Udenu, Nkanu East and Enugu East local government areas.

The Tribunal chaired by Justice Kudirat Murayo Akano dismissed all grounds of petition saying his petition lacked merit.

The panel held that NYSC isn’t a requirement for contesting for the office of the Governor and there’s no where that the NYSC Certificate was attached to the documents Mbah submitted to INEC by the respondent.

On the issue of forging NYSC Certificate, the panel discountenanced all the evidences by the DSS, NYSC official and others because they weren’t in compliance with paragraph 4, sub-section 5D of the evidence act.

Only the witness of the pw26 which was described as a hearsay by the panel and those not help the petitioners and therefore resolved the issue of Certificate Forgery in favour of Mbah.

On the issue of wrong computation of results of the Labour Party in Udenu local government, the panel said they petitioners failed to prove his case and the witnesses they called gave the same report from different polling units and wards and wondered why their testimonies are the same even from different locations.

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The panel also said that the witnesses presented by the Labour Party weren’t duly accredited agents by INEC and makes their testimony invalid.

The panel based on the witnesses from the right agents in 3 polling units, deducted 51 votes from PDP and added same to Labour Party.

The tribunal held that the deduction isn’t enough to Overturn the election of Mbah.

In Amagu polling unit in Nkanu East the panel cancelled the votes for all parties because the witness pw10 proved he was there and the right person.

In the remaining 11 polling units, the tribunal held that the witnesses didn’t sign the result sheet and their witnesses is discountenanced because they can’t prove they were party agents

After resolving all the matter, the tribunal dismissed the petition for lacking in merit.

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Tribunal sacks Kano Gov, Yusuf, declares APC’s Gawuna winner



The Kano Governorship Election Petition Tribunal has sacked Governor Abba Kabir Yusuf, declaring the All Progressives Congress (APC) winner of the March 18 election.

Yusuf, who contested on the platform of the New Nigerian Peoples Party (NNPP), was declared winner of the election by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

While Nasir Gawuna, his APC rival congratulated him, the party proceeded to court.

On Wednesday, the three-man panel ordered withdrawal of certificate of return which INEC presented to Governor Yusuf and directed a certificate of return to be issued to Gawuna.

The court deducted 165,663 votes from Gov Yusuf total as invalid votes, stating that the ballot papers (165,663) were not stamped or signed and therefore declared invalid.

Details later…

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