OBI-BATism and the ‘kingmaker’ president-elect –

By Oludayo Tade

OBI-BATISM is a movement of Nigerian voters and non-voters to return political power to the south of the country after eight years in power in the north under outgoing President Muhammadu Buhari . OBI-BATism fuels this concern before political parties elect a standard-bearer in the interests of peace, justice, equity, and national development. While the All Progressive Congress (APC) settled the issue for the main opposition party, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) refused to vote for the southern Nigerian standard bearer. PDP dares to come up with a permanent contestant, Atiku Abubakar. This split the party, forcing five governors code-named “G5” to quit (Nyesom Wike, Rivers; Samuel Ortom, Benue; Ifeanyi Uguwanyi, Enugu; Okezie Ikpeazu, Abia and Seyi Makinde of Oyo state). These governors claim to represent a movement fighting for fairness, justice and fairness. Apparently they were against another northerner being president of Nigeria. All pleas to them fail, and they turn into a political “cult” group, ready to negotiate with interests that align with their beliefs. The freshman Peter Obi, who has changed the dynamics of the 2023 presidential election, is not ready to be called up, having defected from the PDP to Labor and won the presidency. Likewise, Rabiu Kwakwanso, a former member of the PDP, has also been given a ticket to the New Nigerian People’s Party (NNPP).

A four-horse race has begun between those who want central political power to remain in the north (Atiku Abubakar and Rabiu Kwakwanso) and those who want political power to move south (Bola Ahmed Tinubu and Peter Obi). As announced by Mahmood Yakubu, chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), in the early hours of March 1, 2023, these formations set the stage for a new political dynamic that will rock the 2023 elections and the eventual winner. keynote. March began with the declaration of APC’s Bola Ahmed Tinubu (BAT) as president-elect. The “kingmaker”, now president-elect, beat his long-time rival and political partner Atiku Abubakar and third-force Peter Obi to second and third respectively. Bola Tinubu, who promised to rekindle hope, got 8,794,726 votes, while Atiku Abubakar, who promised to unify the country, got 6,984,520 votes, 1,810,206 votes short of the winner. Political game-changer Peter Obi, who promised to shift the country from consumption to production, returned with 6,101,533 votes in a money war between the two establishment forces. Rabiu Kwakwanso ended with just 1, 496, 687 votes; the largest portion of which came from Kano, the only state he won against any other party.

While the results may have been published, some believe the process is not entirely credible. They are dissatisfied with the way INEC conducts polls such as delays in uploading results, delays in arrival of INEC staff, voter suppression and intimidation, cooperation in electoral fraud, violence and disenfranchisement of Nigerians. This perception has sparked a cold war and hate speech on many social media platforms. Although he finished third, many didn’t think Peter Obi didn’t win. They believe there was shady dealing or election fraud. Friends, colleagues and family turned on each other based on political differences. The sociology of voter behavior and preferences embodied in the 2023 presidential election tells me that Nigerians want a country where peace, progress and prosperity are guaranteed, but are divided on the right pilots to bring the country to that destination. The main debate has been between supporters of President-elect Bola Tinubu and Labor candidate Peter Obi. The old man played dirty and the young man was disappointed with the result. They deduced that the process was compromised. The Asiwaju will not tolerate anyone belittling someone they believe holds the magic wand of their future.

However, the results of the presidential election told a lot of stories for me. First, a total of 14,896,259 (Tinubu + Obi votes) voted for the Southern presidency while a total of 8,481,207 (Atiku + Kwakwanso votes) voted for the Northern presidency. 6. 415,052 people voted for fairness, justice, inclusive governance, peace and unity, if the opposite is true, the country may be threatened. Second, the total number of people who voted against the president-elect was 14, 582, 740, suggesting that if it weren’t for the Obi phenomenon and disruptive political moves by the G5, the chances of being elected may be in jeopardy. Plasma display. This speaks to the need for a president-elect to understand the dynamic needs of these people and incorporate their aspirations into his governance blueprint.

People think it’s backward to vote along tribal lines, even if you believe your race has the best candidate. These ideas, while plausible, downplay the social reality in the sociology of Nigeria’s electoral victory. The law requires a two-thirds majority of all states and the FCT to gain 25%.

That means you have to have a strong base, secure it and build partnerships with political allies in areas with higher voting populations. This is where the Constitution lays the groundwork for dividing voting by race. Bola Tinubu beat the others in those areas, as all three top candidates won 12 states, while the fourth won one. What separates them is his top vote and a margin of 25%. Tinubu kept his Southwest, and where he lost, was by a narrow margin, or not without 25% of the vote. According to the results published by INEC, Obi kept his base, but his gains outside the base were not as high as the top two candidates. Tinubu contacted G5, who increased his payout. This should tell Nigerians that politicians don’t fight like themselves and don’t have permanent enemies. They go after those who can guarantee their interests and their future. Nyesom Wike’s pose captures this perfectly.

INEC, with all its logistical support, should not allow doubt at all, let alone require people to go to court if they have any doubts about the outcome. A Yoruba proverb says if God sees you, let humans see you too (ti olorun ba ri e, je ki eniyan naa ri e). Transparency has tracking variables. Election referees should be transparent and follow prescribed due process. Protests occur when people perceive injustice in the electoral process, which can spark a crisis of legitimacy. Peace is possible when people experience justice. Clearly, we have not learned our lessons from how Kenya conducts its elections.

We need to do better in the upcoming gubernatorial and state assembly elections. Regrettably, the number of people who voted during the presidential and National Assembly polls (approximately 24 million) was less than the 28,614,190 people who voted in the 2019 general election. Apathy is on the rise, perhaps fueled by perceptions of the electoral process and outcome. Planning for at least 50 million voters and having fewer than 25 million voters show up on Election Day is a loss of scarce resources. We must appeal to people and act to give people confidence in our election management system.

Looking ahead, the 2023 presidential election teaches the establishment some lessons about overhyping and overestimating itself. Peter Obi, who is said to have no structure, won 12 states, as did the PDP and APC, which boasted structure. The 6.1 million Nigerians who voted for Peter Obi showed that the people are the backbone of support and structure once your plan captures their needs and aspirations and represents the future they aspire to. Obie and his supporters have proven they exist in real life, not just on social media. Leaders should start tapping into the unmet needs of the people so that impactful policies can be crafted. OBI-BATism is a lesson in democracy and a rewarding springboard for kingmakers to become kings.

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