A chieftain of the Labour Party Wale Okunniyi says the party’s presidential candidate Peter Obi will power to victory by noon on Saturday, pinning his argument on what he described as the LP’s organic support.
“My optimism tells me that by the first ballot [Peter Obi will win] straight. My analyses give me that optimism and the level of hard work some of us have put in. We will be shocked that by 12 noon, it would be clear that we have won,” he said on Thursday while he was featured on Channels Television’s election programme The 2023 Verdict. “I am telling you what I have analysed.”
While voting official ends by 2:30 pm, the Head, Grassroots Mobilization, of the Obi-Datti Presidential Campaign Council (PCC), says before then, Obi would have cleared the polls.
“By 12 noon, you will know that we have won. It may not be official but you will know now when there is a trend,” he said.
“By 2:30 pm that voting ends, it is just to collate. If you are in a polling unit for instance, and you see the trend and you have canvassers, information would have gotten to you,” Okunniyi maintained.
A supporter sticks a party flag to her face during a campaign rally of the Labour party in Lagos, on February 11, 2023. (Photo by PIUS UTOMI EKPEI / AFP)
According to him, with the enthusiasm shown so far by Nigerians, voting should end early Saturday.
“In my polling unit, what has happened so far is that in three hours it is clear [the winner is known] and the INEC officials would just be playing,” he continued.
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Although official results won’t be announced until later, the LP chieftain says he “would have known [the winner]. Knowledge is about information that comes. But officially, well, you have to wait for the declaration of results”.
Okunniyi’s principal, 61, is a former governor of Anambra State and is the youngest of the three frontrunners for Nigeria’s top job in this weekend’s presidential election.
With a message that he is the only candidate offering real change, Obi, a wealthy businessman has emerged as an unexpectedly powerful force in the race.
He challenges ex-Lagos governor Bola Ahmed Tinubu, 70, of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and 76-year-old ex-vice president Atiku Abubakar of the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).