The presidential candidate of the Labor Party (LP), Peter Obi, has urged Nigerians to put aside tribe, ethnicity, religion and vote for competence, character and commitment to change Nigeria in the forthcoming presidential election.
Obi, who spoke in Abuja yesterday, at the 6th edition of the Voice of Women (VOW2022) conference, said next year’s election should also not be based on “my turn” syndrome.
Speaking on the topic “Towards building Nigeria: An agenda setting for an Inclusive and Accountable Nigeria,” Obi also stressed the need for laws that give women and youth a percentage in electoral positions and everybody in Nigeria.
“Don’t vote for me because I’m from the Southeast. Don’t vote for me because I’m an Igbo man. Next year’s election should not be based on tribe, ethnicity, or religion. It should also not be based on ‘my turn’. It should be based on character, competence, capacity, and commitment to start changing Nigeria,” Obi said.
“There should be a law that gives women and youth a percentage in electoral positions and everybody in Nigeria,” he added.
He said if Nigeria must move forward, Nigerians must surround themselves with 50 per cent of women hence they are very critical in building the nation.
He added that women would be an integral part of his decision making if elected president of the country. “I know former Minister of Finance, Dr. Okonji Iweala, who cried to all the 36 governors to save excess crude oil, she knew that there would be a day like this but governors refused and shared the money.”
Speaking further, he said, “Today, with all the floods and everything, we won’t be surprised that soon a bag of rice will be N50,000. What we are going through today is a cumulative effect of leadership failure.
“We are now about to pick a new leadership and we must go beyond all those considerations of storage and think about the future of this country and we cannot do it without women in the driving seat.
“We need to make a law giving women and youths a percentage in all electoral positions and every position in Nigeria like it’s in Bangladesh. Today, Bangladesh is a country that is self-sufficient because of the role women play.”
Also, the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, who was represented by his vice, Senator Kashim Shettima, said their administration would be friendly to women since they are the backbone of our society.
He said, “For Nigeria to reach its full potential, we must give every person a chance to make their best contribution to the well-being and betterment of our nation.
“The growth of our economy and the achievement of our nation’s destiny lie on equity and safeguarding of the fundamental rights and decency in our society.”
On his part, the presidential candidate of the Action Alliance, Hamza Al-Mustapha, said the dignity of women in politics and the inclusiveness must be clear as stated in the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.