Prof. Pat Utomi, Convener of the Big Tent Coalition for Obi/Datti, has urged Nigerians, especially the youth, to vote for the Labour Party’s presidential candidate, Mr Peter Obi, in Saturday’s general elections.
Utomi, a Political Economist and Professor at the Lagos Business School, made the plea in a statement titled “A Perfect Mess and New Possibilities” on Wednesday in Lagos.
According to the Labour Party (LP) chieftain, only Obi and his running mate, Dr Datti Baba-Ahmed, among all candidates has the capacity to perfectly clear the ‘mess’ in the nation.
“It is liberation time as the Peter Obi/Datti Baba-Ahmed ticket brings a breath of fresh air to the quest to take back Nigeria and remake it for its young people.
“Perhaps we can miss the wider road to serfdom,” Utomi said.
The professor, who decried the challenges of fuel and new Naira scarcity, epileptic power supply and network, economic hardship and insecurity, said that the nation’s leaders had failed “examinations”.
He urged All Progressives Congress Congress (APC) to apologise to Nigerians instead of campaigning.
Utomi said that Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) had also lost character for breaking its grand norm of North-South power rotation.
The professor noted that the young of Nigeria had suffered enough to be left to such a future.
He said that politicians had weaponised poverty to easily manipulate and suppress voters, and buy their conscience during elections.
Utomi said: “Much of this will likely be on display this weekend even as our friends from the West who are election observers observe but not see.
“And the perfect mess will roll on, unless the youth of the land look at the famished road ahead and say we protect this vote and if we die we die.
“Between the greed of the complicit, middle hoping the victory of different candidates can place them on the gravy train and those so poor and more desperate for scarce new Naira that they will sell more than their vote, we are lost.
“This is why this week, the pain and anger in the land is so high that there are enough people ready to defy the moments vote price for a taste of freedom,” Utomi said.
He applauded some of Nigeria’s grand patriarchs like former President Olusegun Obasanjo, Chief Ayo Adebanjo, Chief Edwin Clark and others “for showing examples of dignity in leadership that can be shoulders to stand on for many.”
“What is evident is that on Feb. 25th, God sets before us light and darkness, more of yesterday or a new beginning, life or death. May we choose life that we may live.
“It’s now left for the people to massively show up to vote, and protect their vote. A new Nigeria is possible and we hope it begins this Saturday,” Utomi said
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Nigerians will on Saturday go to the polls to elect a new president and members of the National Assembly.
The Governorship and House of Assembly elections are billed for March 11. (NAN)