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2023: Southern, Middle Belt Ethnic Nationalities Endorse Peter Obi For President In High-Profile Gathering

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The Southern and Middle Belt Leaders Forum, SMBLF, on Thursday, February 2, 2023, reaffirmed their support for the presidential candidate of the Labour Party, LP, Peter Obi and his running mate, Datti Baba-Ahmed, in this month’s election.

Rising from an extraordinary meeting held at Wells Carlton Hotel Abuja, the leaders of the ethnic nationalities of Southern and Central Nigeria maintained that they would work assiduously to ensure that the former Anambra State governor is elected as president in the upcoming February 25 election.

In a communique presented to press members after the high-profile meeting, the SMBLF urged Nigerians to join the leaders to push for the realization of the Obi presidency.

The forum warned those who may be thinking of disrupting the coming general elections that lovers of democracy will resist any attempt to derail the exercise.

The leader of the forum, Chief Edwin Clark, the Ijaw national leader, attended the meeting virtually, while those physically present include Chief Ayo Adebanjo, the Leader of Afenifere; Oba Oladipo Olaitan, the Deputy Leader, of Afenifere; Dr Pogu Bittus, the President of the Middle-Belt Forum; Cornelius Adebayo, a former governor of Kwara State; Okey Emuchay, the Secretary General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo; John Nnia Nwodo, a former President of Ohanaeze Ndigbo; Kofoworola Bucknor Akerele, a former Deputy Governor of Lagos State; Dame Betty Ibeni, Dr Chukwuemeka Ezeife, a former Governor of Anambra State, Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, a prominent business tycoon and publisher; Simon Okeke, Denzel Kentebe, Sola Ebiseni, the Secretary General of Afenifere; Ibe Nwosu, Prof. ABC Nwosu, a former member of Peoples Democratic Party’s board of trustees; Dele Farotimi, a famous democracy activist; Chief Uga Dem, Benjamin Akaka, Elizabeth Jibrin, Valentine Ozigbo, a 2021 Anambra Governorship Candidate and Special Adviser to Peter Obi; Charlie Oputa (Charlie Boy), the Convener of Our Mumu Don Do; among others.

Nwodo, a former Information Minister, read the communique issued at the end of the meeting, stressing that the leaders will work hard in their various constituencies to ensure that they give the Labour Party’s presidential candidate massive support at the election for the sake of a better Nigeria.

The communique reads, “We give our unalloyed vote of thanks to our father and leader Chief Edwin Clark for his boldness, sagacity, tenacity and relentlessness in pursuing the aims and aspirations of this organization.

“That we warn all those who want to change the hands of the clock of Nigeria by doing anything that will derail a peaceful transition to the next civilian government of this country, that we shall rise like one-man in defence of the ballot box and that Nigerians must go to vote.

“This we have resolved today and we enjoin other Nigerians who do not belong to our organization to join us in realizing this for the betterment of Nigeria. Peter Obi is your son and he is the rock upon which Nigeria will stand.”

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