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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Drama As Suspended Labour Party Deputy Chairman Jeered at Election Tribunal

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ABUJA, Nigeria — As the capital’s political temperature heated up, a simmering party feud boiled over in the open Wednesday, May 17, 2023, with Lamidi Apapa, a factional chairman of the Labour Party, LP, facing the scornful boos and jeers of party members loyal to National Chairman Julius Abure.

The discord played out dramatically outside the Appeal Court in Abuja, the venue of the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal.

Apapa, under a barrage of derision, was hastily ushered away from the scene by a law enforcement officer, reflecting a party mired in conflict and uncertainty.

Labour Party Lamidi Apapa
Suspended Labour Party Deputy Chairman Lamidi Apapa (centre) after he was booed at the Tribunal in Abuja on Wednesday, May 17, 2023 | Twitter

The incident unfolded as the Tribunal prepared to resume the pre-hearing of the petition from LP presidential candidate Peter Obi against the President-Elect, Bola Tinubu.

“Today’s hostility was an unfortunate reflection of our party’s current division,” a bystander, who identified himself as a long-time party member, lamented.

“We should be focusing on the Tribunal proceedings, not airing our dirty laundry in public.”

The altercation served as the latest public display of the deep-seated rift within the Labour Party, with disagreement centered around which faction should be present at the Tribunal.

The quarrel ignited just as the session began, threatening to overshadow the serious legal proceedings taking place.

Peter Obi, the LP presidential candidate challenging the election results, is yet to comment on the incident.

His petition against President-Elect Tinubu is one of the most highly anticipated cases to go before the Tribunal this year.

Some party members have voiced concerns that the internal feud may compromise the party’s chances of a successful petition.

“The public squabbling undermines our case,” said a party official who requested anonymity due to the sensitivity of the matter. “We need to present a unified front if we are to stand a chance against Tinubu.”

As the Labour Party grapples with its internal struggles, it remains to be seen whether it can pull itself together to effectively challenge the recent election results, or if the public spectacle of the party’s strife will continue to overshadow its legal and political efforts.

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