The presidential candidate of the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP), Rabiu Kwankwaso, has advised a former governor of Anambra state, Peter Obi, to accept an offer of being his running mate for the forthcoming presidential election.
Telescope.ng reports that Kwankwaso said Obi being on the ticket of the NNPP as a vice-presidential candidate in 2023 would provide a viable route for the southeast to actualize its presidential ambition in the future.
The former governor also said accepting to be running mate to Obi or any other presidential candidate would lead to the collapse of his own party, the NNPP.
Kwankwaso, a former governor of Kano state, who was in Gombe state to inaugurate the state office of NNPP and to meet with elected members of the party, stated this in an interview with journalists.
He said his political profile built over the years and his wealth of experience, having served in various capacities in the country, had helped in bringing NNPP to limelight within a short time.
He said with the fame the NNPP has achieved within a short time, anything short of his presidency under the party would mean the collapse of the NNPP.
Kwankwaso confirmed that his party had been in talks with the Labour Party for possible merger but the main issue hindering progress is the issue of who becomes the presidential candidate of such an alliance.
He said: “From the discussion with Labour Party, the main issue was who becomes the president if the parties merge.”
A former governor of Anambra state, Peter Obi, is the presidential candidate of the Labour Party.
The NNPP candidate said: “At the end of the day, some of our representatives thought that there should be criteria in terms of age, qualification, offices held, performance and so on.
“Of course the other side wouldn’t want that. Most of the people from there believe that presidency has to go there (southeast).
“If now I decide to be vice presidential candidate to anybody in this country; NNPP will collapse, because the party is based on what we have built in the last 30 years.
“I served for 17 years as a civil servant; we are talking of 47 years of very serious hard work that is what is rarely holding NNPP now.”
The national leader of the NNPP said he was not against presidency going to any part of the country but it must be done based on “strategy, political calculation and equation.”
According to him, the southeast are good in business and are well talented but they should learn politics.
Kwankwaso added: “In politics they are at the bottom line.”
He stated that the zone lost out on the presidential and vice presidential candidates of both All Progressives Congress (APC) and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) but now has a chance with the NNPP.