The popularity of Peter Obi, the presidential candidate of the Labour party in recent times, can be greatly attributed to the calibre of the intellectuals in his network. Obi, who has uniquely created a third force in the Nigerian political space for the first time in several years, enjoys support from the youths. The former governor of Anambra state whose political ambition has been regarded as a light in the dark tunnel owes his traction to a working network.
Although Peter Obi looks like a “one-man army” to many. He has an amazing network that pulls the string to make his persona admirable. Let’s take a look at some of these juggernauts.
Doyin Okupe, former Director General of the Labour Party Presidential Campaign Organization (LPPCO), has been a close ally of Peter Obi. Okupe’s name was submitted to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as a placeholder for the vice presidential candidate of the party. Known as a strong supporter of Obi, Okupe believes that Obi is going to return Nigeria to its rightful owners. He was actively involved in the search for Peter’s running mate, after accepting the flagbearer’s choice of a young northern candidate. His efforts were also reflected in his resignation letter addressed to Obi. Okupe said, “I have invested too much in your campaign to allow my personal travails to become a source of distraction.” Okupe, despite his resignation, has been closely behind Obi, as he prays that God gives them victory.
Major General John Enenche
The retired general worked with Peter Obi as a commanding officer of an Army engineers unit, in Onitsha, Anambra state. John is a firm believer in Obi because through his help a lot of insecurity and criminality was flushed out of Onitsha under Operation Mesa. Enenche who commended Obi’s strategic leadership when he was governor in Anambra has openly declared support for Obi’s 2023 presidency ambition. Having known Obi for over 17 years, Enenche believes the labour party candidate can provide quality leadership for the nation.
His closeness to Obi was also brought to the fore when he made the list of Labour party presidential campaign council. He was later removed from the list as his name sparked widespread reactions. Recall that Enenche who was director of information of the Defence Headquarters (DHQ) during the #EndSARS protests in 2020, had described reports of soldiers shooting at the tollgate as “mere allegations”. Despite his removal, he has been very supportive of Obi expressing the belief that they are what Nigeria needs to overcome all the numerous challenges imposed on the citizenry in the last two decades.
Barr Julius Abure
Serving as the national chairman of the Labour party, Julius Abure has strongly fought for the political ambition of Obi. He has been right beside him canvassing support physically and financially from stakeholders ahead of the 2023 election. Abure whose chairmanship was threatened by Callistus Okafor believes that Obi and Labour party is the alternative Nigerians need. The Labour chieftain is a staunch believer in Obi’s track record and antecedents. His role in Obi’s campaign can not be downplayed.
Oseloka served as the secretary to the Anambra state government, when Obi was governor. He has been an ardent supporter and believer of Obi. He is known to closely work with Obi in facilitating the enhancement of the living conditions of people. Oseloka, who has known Obi since his secondary school days, has been a close friend to him for decades. Serving as the deputy director of the Labour party presidential campaign council, the former 2016 PDP governorship aspirant has played the role of a mentor, brother, and friend to Obi.
Kenneth Okonkwo serves as the spokesperson for the Labour Party presidential campaign council. Kenneth has been a strong supporter of Obi, since he dumped the All Progressives Congress, APC, and joined the Labour Party over the presidential Muslim-Muslim ticket. Believing that a new Nigeria is possible, Kenneth upholds the Obi-Datti campaigns and has been serving it hot to opposition parties. He recently expressed delight over Obi’s performance at Chatham house and has used it as an attack on other political contenders.
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