By Felix Oboagwina
its fire –forget the other day’s PR trip to Pa Reuben Fasoranti in Ondo. Today, that foremost Yoruba socio-political group backs Obi 100 percent. Without Afenifere’s pillar of support, it cannot be smooth sailing for the former Lagos Governor.
OBI AND THE IBO FACTOR
Yes, Peter Obi is a boy, an Igbo (or Ibo) boy. Therefore, the former Anambra State Governor will naturally command the support of his kith and kin. However, social media buffs have pointed out that if you drop Obi from LP and replace him with any other Igbo politician, like Orji Uzoh Kalu or Rochas Okorocha, they would abandon LP like hot potato. Obidents swing only in one direction, the Peter Obi direction.
Why Obi? Obi packs qualities that those other politicians lack. Like them, he served in public office, but his integrity rings loudly and deafeningly. Here is a man who has refused to allocate to himself post-service pecks and pecuniary, where his mates corner lifelong cars, cash and castles from the state coffers! He exudes capacity, competence and character. Those qualities make sweet music in Nigerians’ ears.
It has nothing to do with the Igbo people. Obi’s magic goes beyond Igbo backing. His votes in Lagos came majorly from non-Igbo voters. Go and verify.
Agreed that the garrulousness, bragging and verbosity of a minuscule few of Igbo loudmouths would not help matters, but not all Igbo proclaim Lagos as a NO-MAN’S-LAND that they want to TAKE OVER. Yoruba “indigenes” will fight anyone proclaiming that assumption.
However, one thing I know (since serving as Director twice in the Jimi Agbaje governorship campaigns of 2015 and 2019) is that the Tinubu political family dusts up this propaganda-blackmail every election cycle. Fela calls it “their regular trademark.” This Igbo-want-to-take-over-Lagos is a xenophobic slang they apply during every election. They spread the misinformation that the opposition wants to red-carpet and royalise the “Igbo strangers” in Lagos. They used it against Jimi Agbaje. They tried it with Jandor. Now they are bringing that piece of trash against Rhodes-Vivour, whose principal happens to be Igbo. They disguise the blackmail as a clarion call for Yoruba unity, irredentism and nationalism. By these satanic verses, they paint Tinubu’s clique as protectors of Yoruba interest and resisters of Igbo expansionism. Those who know Lagos politics know that the MC Oluomo-Tinubu group are lying. Unfortunately, however, the formula seems to work. Always.
(OBOAGWINA IS AN AUTHOR AND JOURNALIST, AND MAY BE REACHED VIA: email@example.com)