Labour Party’s vice-presidential candidate, Datti Baba-Ahmed, says it is okay for the “owners of structures” and “master politicians” to underestimate the party and the ‘Obi-dient’ movement.
“I want to be fully underestimated. I want Peter Obi to be fully underestimated by the so-called master politicians, the owners of resources, and the owners and masters of structures,” Baba-Ahmed said on Channels Television’s Political Paradigm on Tuesday. “We are nothing; he is just a businessman (and) I am just an educationist.”
The Kaduna-born politician and running mate to Peter Obi dismissed claims that the Labour Party can’t win 25% of votes in 24 states in the 2023 presidential election.
“They don’t know what they are saying,” he said when responding to critics and contenders who claim the party can’t get 25% of votes in 24 states across the federation.
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According to Section 34 of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC)’s Regulations and Guidelines for the conduct of Elections, a presidential candidate can only be announced as the winner if he or she “has the majority of votes cast at the election; and has not less than one-quarter of the votes cast at the election in at least two-thirds of all the States in the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja”.
Continuing, Baba-Ahmed said, “Awareness has been very high in the north. What happens is that northerners listen more to the politicians and the politicians seem to have more impact on the populace in the north and awareness is pretty high.
“Whoever thinks that Labour Party or Obi-dient movement or Peter Obi as an individual is not being welcomed in the north, they are making a huge mistake.”
Baba-Ahmed further said he is “realistic” that Labour Party will win next February’s presidential election, adding that the results of three surveys conducted by various credible bodies are a reflection of the public pulse.
“I was elated by those results. I do believe those results,” he said.
‘Peter Obi Not A Crowd-Renter’
On the rallies attended by thousands of Obi-Datti supporters in major cities in the country, Baba-Ahmed said those “crowds” were not rented but organic.
“I am not a crowd-renter and I can tell you that Peter Obi is not a crowd-renter. Those are legitimate, bonafide, self-funded, organic crowd,” he said.
Obi and Datti are in the race with established contenders including Bola Tinubu and Kashim Shettima of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as well as Atiku Abubakar and Ifeanyi Okowa of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).