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Politics Updated: April 07, 2024

Obi is free to leave Labour Party - NLC Spokesman declares

By TIMOTHY TIMILEHIN ENIETAN-MATTHEWS
April 07, 2024
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The Spokesman of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Benson Upah has told the presidential candidate of the Labour Party in the 2023 general elections, Peter Obi that he is free to leave the party.

Upah made the declaration in an interview with Sunday PUNCH.

Upah also said that the leadership of the NLC vowed not to rest until it unseats Julius Abure as national chairman of the Labour Party.

According to the NLC spokesman, despite the ‘illegal’ national convention that returned Abure to office, the union would never confer legitimacy or give recognition to his leadership.

He said: “Our position on this matter is clear and has not changed. Abure remains unknown to us. It is not a question of removal. As far as we know, he does not exist.”

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Allnews.ng reports that the crisis in the party got even more compounded when a group of retired workers under the aegis of Lagos Assembly of Labour Veterans and Trade Unionists, called for the resignation of the embattled national chairman of the party and the NLC President, Joe Ajaero, over their contentious leadership struggle.

It will also be recalled that Obi has been at loggerheads with the leadership of the LP over the manner it conducted the convention in Nnewi, Anambra State, despite his plea for wider consultation.

Obi had explained that he didn’t attend the national convention that got Julius Abure re-elected as the party’s national chairman because the party’s leadership failed to heed his appeal for wider consultation with relevant stakeholders before the exercise.

However, Upah, while speaking further, said the issue of whether Obi should stay or leave the party should not be debated, saying the former governor was free to determine his destiny.

According to him, the NLC cannot stand in the way of the presidential candidate should he decide to defect to another political platform.

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Though he described Obi as an asset, Upah insisted that the congress would not stand in his way if he chose to leave.

“The right of choice is available to Mr Obi. If he chooses to leave the party, that is his preference. We can’t sit in judgment over him on that. But if he chooses to remain, of course, Peter Obi is an asset any day. I rest my case on that,” he said.

 

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