Labour Party condemns middle belt group for allegedly gagging Peter Obi

The Board of trustees, Labour Party has condemned the alleged gag order placed on Peter Obi, the candidate of the party in the 2023 presidential election.

This was contained in a statement issued by the publicity secretary of the party Emmanuel Idakwo and made available to Newsmen in Lokoja on Tuesday.

The statement titled “Disagreement and rebuttal of the incorrect criticisms of some groups in middle Belt against Peter Obi” reads: “We are deeply concerned by the recent imposition of a gag order on the presidential candidate of the Labour Party by some pressure groups in the Middle Belt Pan Nigeria Forum.

“This directive restricts the candidate from making any statements regarding the 2023 presidential election. The election, widely recognised as plagued by irregularities, particularly in the transmission of results from polling units to the IREV, has raised serious concerns about the integrity of the electoral processes,” the statement said.

The publicity secretary in the statement , said, “it was out of place to prevent Peter Obi from commenting on the election which was widely regarded as being flaut by irregularities, noting that Obi needed to put future election in the country on the right pedestal.

“The mandate of INEC to ensure that Nigerian citizens’ votes are accurately counted and reflected in the final results has come under scrutiny with reports suggesting discrepancies between votes cast and the results announced. The disenchantment felt by the electorate due to these irregularities undermines the democratic principles upheld by our nation.

“It is imperative that measures are taken to address these concerns and uphold the credibility of the electoral process. Restricting candidates from speaking out on such issues only serves to stifle transparency and hinder the path towards a fair and just election outcome.

“We call for a reevaluation of this seeming statement that appears to be the hands Esau but the voice of Jacob.”

He said the European Union report on the presidential election stands as a comprehensive analysis and critique, serving as a paradigm for electoral processes worldwide.

“The evident shortcomings revealed during the election proceedings have cast a shadow of doubt over the integrity of our electoral system. Regrettably, the lack of transparency and accountability exhibited by the electoral management body has only fueled skepticism and disillusionment among the populace.

“Despite the Supreme Court’s affirmation of the Election Tribunal’s decision, it does not negate the glaring irregularities that marred the electoral process. The absence of a plausible explanation for the technical glitches further compounds the skepticism surrounding the election outcome.

“The notion that the Supreme Court’s ruling was a foregone conclusion raises questions about the independence and impartiality of our judicial system,” he added.