200 Youth Groups, Others Write Obi, Otti To Back Balami  

The Coalition for Peter Obi (CPO), an umbrella group comprising of over 200 support groups, has expressed its support for Captain Isaac David Balami to become the next national chairman of the Labour Party (LP).

Also calling on the party leadership to support Balami are the Afenifere National Youths Council (ANYC), and the Niger Delta Youth Council (NDYC).

According to both ANYC and NDYC, Balami has proven to be a man of integrity and can be trusted with the job of Labour Party’s leadership at the top.

They disclosed this in separate statements signed by Eniola Joseph Ojajuni of ANYC and Chief Henderson Henry of NDYC, respectively.

The development followed the calls for the resignation of the incumbent LP national chairman, Julius Abure, over corruption allegations against him by various individuals, groups, and some party chieftains.

Abure has been accused of enriching himself with the 2023 campaign funds of the party and failing to account for the sum of N3.5bn. The national treasurer, Oluchi Opara, has also made similar allegation against Abure. However, Abure’s supporters and some party leaders suspended the party’s treasurer for raising what they termed as a false alarm.

Many members of the Obi-dients Movement in the party are said to be concerned about the future of the Labour Party since the corruption allegations against Abure became known. The Obi-dient youths were particularly worried about Abure’s numerous fights in many fronts, which they believe would affect the party’s performance in the upcoming elections.

In a recent statement, the CPO national coordinator, Barr. Joshua Ebighiebi, appealed to the party’s presidential candidate in the last election, Peter Obi, and the governor of Abia State, Alex Otti, to support the call for Balami’s chairmanship of the party.

Balami had recently been put under pressure by stakeholders and Obi-dient youths to accept the chairmanship role of the party.

The statement titled, “Over Two hundred (200) Peter Obi Support Groups Insist on Isaac Balami for Labour Party Chairmanship,” pleaded with the party leadership to support Balami, saying with him at the helm of affairs, the crisis in the party would be peacefully resolved, and the party can emerge victorious in future elections.

The statement further highlighted Balami’s achievements as a professional and as a former Deputy Campaign Manager for Obi/Datti in the last presidential election.

The CPO, the Coalition for New Nigeria (CNN), and the Coalition for Better and Brighter Nigeria (CBBN) were some of the 200 major support groups that championed Peter Obi’s presidential bid in the 2023 elections and are now backing Isaac Balami for the Labour Party’s National Chairmanship.

The groups played a crucial role in mobilising support for and raising awareness both nationally and internationally for Obi’s campaign. Their collective efforts were part of a significant political movement known as the ‘Obi-dient Movement,’ aimed at bringing about positive change in Nigeria.

Balami, a young and dynamic leader with a people-centric approach, played a pivotal role during the 2023 presidential election campaigns. His collaboration with support groups and stakeholders, such as spearheading the ‘Papa, Mama, Pikin’ initiative and addressing the shortage of LP polling unit agents, showcased his charm, charisma, and strategic acumen. Despite tight deadlines and limited resources, Balami’s partnership with support groups on the projects remained strong.

As the Labour Party faces significant challenges with its current leadership, the upcoming national convention of the party to elect new officials must prioritise credibility, character, and capacity in the selection process. Balami, with his transformative visionary leadership qualities, is a unifier who can bring together diverse groups and stakeholders, building a cohesive and harmonious party that represents all segments of society.

The ‘Obidients’ are calling on Peter Obi, as the Leader of the party, to promote transparency and inclusivity within the Labour Party. This includes allowing all qualified members, including the Obi-dients, to actively engage in the party’s affairs and conventions by granting a two-year waiver to all Obi-dients who wish to participate in the National Convention of LP as delegates and aspirants.

In a heartfelt appeal, the statement urged Peter Obi to endorse their efforts to back Chief Engr. Isaac Balami and ensure that the Labour Party remains a formidable force in Nigerian politics.

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