~The merger talks between the Labour Party and the New Nigeria Peoples Party have come to an end, Victor Umeh, a chieftain of the party has said.
~Umeh said the talks for a possible merger between the two parties collapsed completely because they could not reach an agreement on who would be the presidential candidate.
~According to him, it is hard to understand why the presidential candidate for the NNPP Rabiu Kwankwaso in a recent interview gave the impression that the discussions are ongoing between the two parties.
A former national chairman of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Victor Umeh on Tuesday, July 5, said that the merger talks between the Labour Party and the New Nigeria Peoples Party ended over two weeks ago.
Speaking on Channels Television’s Politics Today, Umeh who is contesting for a senatorial seat on the platform of the Labour Party said that efforts to forge a merger with the NNPP collapsed on June 15.
He noted that the move to form an alliance between Labour Party and the NNPP collapsed completely because bother parties could not agree on who would become the presidential candidate and the running mate.
Faulting Senator Rabiu Kwankwaso for giving Nigerians the impression that talks were still ongoing between both parties, Umeh said the Labour Party is no longer interested in any other discussions with the NNPP.
His words: “We are surprised at the recent media blaze by the members of the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP) to continuously suggest that they were locked in a negotiation with the Labour Party to have a partnership or arrangement where the two parties will work together in 2023.
“We are surprised to continuously see this, we had this discussion precisely on the 15th of June, more than three weeks ago. What necessitated the meeting was that the NNPP and LP working together will give a better opportunity for the presidential election to be won. And the two parties set up two teams.
“Myself, Julius Aboreh, the Labour Party chairman who led our team; Doyin Okupe went to that discussion on behalf of the Labour Party; while the NNPP put forward Buba Galadima, Abdullahi Baffa, former executive secretary of TETFUND, and Ladipo Johnson.”
FLOGGING A DEAD HORSE
According to Umeh, the meeting was held between a three-man team from the Labour Party which was adjourned and after some back-and-forth, the dialogue had to come to an end when it became obvious they were hitting a dead horse.
Umeh added: “It was on the 15th of June that the whole talks collapsed completely. The Labour Party has averted its mind from every other discussion with the NNPP.
“But these fellows have continued to give the impression that they are still in talks with the Labour Party. We couldn’t agree on the knotty issue of who becomes the presidential candidate. Will it be Peter Obi of the LP or Rabiu Kwankwaso?
“What they are saying is not in tune with the reality of things. If Peter Obi, who is being sought after, stepped down to deputise Kwankwaso, it would have been injurious to his reputation.”
Daily News Reporters