With less than 23 days to the forthcoming February general elections, Dr Uche Ekwunife, the Senator representing Anambra Central Senatorial District, has shocked Nigerians following her sudden switch of support for the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, to that of the Labour Party (LP), Mr Peter Obi.
Ekwunife, a member of the PDP ,disclosed her decision during a stakeholders’ meeting, made up of men and women leaders at the Agulu town hall on Sunday.
Speaking in Igbo, she said, “Vote for me in PDP. In the presidential election, we all know where we are going to vote. We are politicians. We know this game very well. It’s on our fingertips. Peter Obi is our son and my mentor; we can’t work against him.
“But what I’m asking you is to vote for me in PDP. At the presidential level we all know who is our preferred candidate. That one is not in dispute. It’s settled. She spoke in Igbo.
Though, Ekwunife had at the official flag-off of the presidential campaign of PDP held at Uyo, Akwa Ibom State in October, 2022, said Nigeria didn’t need a kindergarten president.
In the video which went viral, the senator while campaigning for the PDP Presidential candidate, Mr Atiku Abubakar said Nigeria would not need someone who would always remind the country of her problem, but one who knew how to solve it.
Many followers of Peter Obi in Anambra State and beyond had interpreted the video to be referring to Peter Obi, the Presidential candidate of LP.
Many supporters of Obi also lashed out at Ekwunife, who had before now, declared herself a political daughter of Obi, before his (Obi) departure from PDP to LP.
But in a press statement, Ekwunife who seemed to have realised her mistake had recanted, saying she was not referring to Obi.
A press statement by her media assistant, Mr Kingsley Ubani said the video was being misinterpreted. It said: “The Senator representing Anambra Central Senatorial District, Uche Ekwunife PhD, earlier today (in October) stated that Nigeria needs a President that can transit its economy from consumption to production, adding that the country does not need a kindergarten President.
“Ekwunife who spoke at the PDP Presidential Campaign flag-off in Uyo, Akwa Ibom state was addressing Nigerians on the need to support her Party’s Presidential Candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar.
“The interpretation in some or that Senator Ekwunife was referring to the Labour Party Presidential Candidate, Mr Peter Obi or the candidate of any other political party in her speech, is wrong.
“Senator Ekwunife’s statements were in line with the fact that Nigeria needs a President who is well rounded, and has the resume’, experience, mindset and qualifications to lead the country out of the woods.”