Dino Melaye, former senator representing Kogi west, says Peter Obi, presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP), was not known nationally until Atiku Abubakar, standard bearer of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), “identified him”.
Obi, a former governor of Anambra state, was the running mate to the former vice-president in the 2019 general election.
He defected to LP shortly before the primary election of the PDP which Abubakar won ahead of 2023.
Speaking at an event in Abuja on Saturday night, Melaye described Abubakar as a “talent hunter”.
“I am happy that everybody here is singing one song and that is Atiku for president. Many are already voting on social media but INEC has no voting centre on social media,” the former lawmaker said.
“Atiku supporters are real, they are original. You can see them and they have PVCs. We have two very important people contesting this election. Atiku Abubakar, the Wazirin Adamawa and Bola Ahmed Tinubu of the APC.
“At 75, what is new that Atiku would be looking for other than to set the pedestal for the upcoming generation to have a life they can call their own? So this competent Nigerian that is highly mobile and administratively sagacious is coming to change the narrative.
“Obi is a fantastic Nigerian but he was not known nationally until Atiku identified him. Atiku is a talent hunter. Everyone who was a reformer in this country between 1999 to date was a discovery of Atiku.
“Atiku discovered Obi before keyboard warriors discovered Obi. Unfortunately, elections are not going to take place on social media.
“It is going to take place at the polling units. And those that would vote are the people here. So it is now operation votes must count.”
On her part, Maimunat Wada, convener of Diamond Ladies in Politics, pledged to mobilise no fewer than two million votes for PDP in the presidential poll.
“With Atiku Abubakar on the saddle of leadership of the country, there would be inclusiveness of Nigerians irrespective of their tribal and religious affiliations,” Wada said.
“Atiku’s choice of his running mate, His Excellency Dr Ifeanyi Okowa, his array of business partners, investments spread across the country and even the ethnic backgrounds of his spouses are clear testimony that he would be a true Nigerian president.”