More Crisis in Abure's Labour Party as 'Obidients’ Disown LP’s 'Obidient Directorate'

More Crisis in Abure’s Labour Party as ‘Obidients’ Disown LP’s ‘Obidient Directorate’

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The crisis in Labour Party (LP) seems nowhere near abating, as supporters of its presidential candidate in the 2023 general election, Mr. Peter Obi, under the aegis of the “Obidient Movement”, have disowned the party’s recent decision to establish an “Obedient Directorate”.

The Obidient Movement issued the disclaimer in a statement, late on Sunday in Abuja, jointly signed by Mubarak Bawa, for Obidient Conveners Collective, comprising 223 Peter Obi Support Group Conveners; Barr. Daniel Elomba, Co-Convener, Peter Obi Support Network (POSN); and 37 others.

The “Obidient Movement” said, “Ngogbehei’s attempts to portray himself as ‘The Obidient Leader’ is laughable. The Obidient Movement recognises no leader other than Peter Obi. Ngogbehei, a drifter with a tainted past, is not, and will never be, a figure of influence within our ranks.”

LP’s National Chairman, Julius Abure, had in a move aimed at dousing tension and rebuilding confidence of among stakeholders of the party announced the formation of the directorate to coordinate its affairs.

As part of its repositioning efforts, LP announced the establishment of the Obedient Directorate. It appointed Marcel Ngogbehei as Director, Aju Elumelu as Deputy Director (Diaspora), and Mariam Ismaila as Deputy Director.

The move to formalise the Obidient Directorate and integrate its members into the party structure angered the Obidient Movement’s leaders. They viewed the creation of the directorate and the appointment of individuals without consulting Obi or the core movement as an overreach.

The group’s leaders denounced the party’s decision, saying it is an attempt to usurp the Obidient Movement’s grassroots-driven force.

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In the statement, titled, “We Vehemently Reject Julius Abure’s Attempt to Usurp the Obidient Movement,” leading conveners of the Obidient Movement, representing 261 support groups, rejected LP’s offer.

The statement stressed the movement’s origins as an independent body of support groups, which played a critical role in reviving LP’s political fortunes.

It statement read, “We, the leading 261 conveners of the Obidient Movement support groups, are compelled to issue this statement, rejecting Julius Abure’s brazen attempt to co-opt the Obidient Movement by creating an ‘Obedient Directorate’ within the Labour Party.

“The Obidient Movement predates Peter Obi’s entry into the Labour Party and is a global force far more potent than the Labour Party, which had not seen electoral success since Olusegun Mimiko’s 2007 governorship win in Ondo.”

The statement further said, “The Labour Party had one job in the 2023 elections: to protect the votes and secure the victory achieved by the Obidients.

“On this simple task, Julius Abure and his party failed spectacularly – failing Peter Obi, failing the millions of Obidients worldwide, and failing Nigeria’s future generations.”

The leaders of the various support groups described the move by the LP leadership as an attempt to control the movement that had brought new vitality to the party, calling the initiative a “ludicrous scheme” and a “destructive plot.”

The Obidient Movement’s conveners also described the move as a ploy orchestrated by forces with the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).

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It said, “This ludicrous scheme, no doubt concocted within the corridors of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) – whose president and cronies are desperate to undermine Peter Obi’s popularity and the unstoppable force of the Obidients Movement – is doomed to fail.”

The Obidient Movement’s leaders criticised Ngogbehei’s appointment, labelling him a discredited figure with a history of corruption, and emphasised that the movement recognised no other leader than Obi.

They stressed, “We categorically reject the creation of an Obidients Directorate within the Labour Party. We explicitly reject the appointment of a charlatan, like Marcel Ngogbehei, to any position of authority within the movement.

“We call on Julius Abure to halt this destructive plot and engage in sincere dialogue with the true stakeholders of the Obidients Movement, starting with His Excellency, Peter Obi.”

An official response from LP was still being awaited as at the time of filing this report.

Chuks Okocha

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