- Says no true friend of Nigeria ‘ll ignore obvious manipulations of presidential poll
Stephen Ukandu, Umuahia
The presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi, has told the United States of America, that the manipulations of the February 25 presidential poll results, were too glaring to be ignored by a true friend of Nigeria.
Obi who was reacting to the recent phone conversation between the US Secretary of States, Antony Blinken, and candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, who was declare winner of the presidential poll by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC.
Obi and his Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, counterpart, Atiku Abubakar, are currently in the court, challenging Tinubu’s emergence.
The former Governor of Anambra State was not comfortable with the call by the US Secretary of States to Tinubu, saying it amounts to giving tacit legitimacy to a stolen mandate.
Obi who took to his Twitter handle on Friday, cautioned the US not to behave in a way suggestive of taking partisan position in Nigeria’s internal affairs.
He insisted that the true winner of the presidential poll could only be determined by the court currently handling the various petitions arising from the poll.
Obi wrote: There is still a lack of clarity on the basis of the U.S. Secretary of State, Antony J. Blinken’s call to APC’s presidential candidate, Bola Ahmed Tinubu on 16th May 2023. The most fundamental tenet and core value of democracy is the rule of law.
“Nigeria’s democracy is founded on these principles which the American people hold dear. Without the risk of interfering in Nigeria’s domestic affairs, the U.S.-Nigeria’s relationship should be guided by the core values of democracy.
“Above all, Nigerians expect that the U.S. responses to our affairs should be based on mutual respect, shared ideals, aspirations and interests which ought to transcend the considerations of any individual.
“Contextually, the willful manipulation and falsification of the will of Nigerians as freely expressed during the February 25 elections cannot be overlooked by the true friends and partners of Nigeria.
“It is thus of overarching importance that a beacon of democracy like the United States should not respond to political developments in Nigeria in a manner that faintly suggests taking sides.
“There is an evolving political and judicial process around the last presidential election in Nigeria. We expect the United States to await the full resolution of the ongoing judicial processes before tacitly conferring legitimacy on any of the contending parties.
“The final determination of the true winner of the election can only be made by the relevant courts of law. More so, the issues in judicial contention imply far-reaching violations of both the Nigerian Electoral Law and the Nigerian Constitution,” Obi said.