2023: Peter Obi hints Kano Billionaire as Running Mate

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Ahead of the July 15 deadline for the running mates, there are indications that the Presidential Candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi may pick Kano-based economist, educationist and politician, Datti Baba-Ahmed as Vice-Presidential Candidate.

Obi hinted in an Interview with Arise TV that Datti Baba-Ahmed was a man he would like to work with following his antecedents as a former Senator and the values he stands for.

He said, “We’re talking to a quite number of people and Baba-Ahmed is a capable hand and I wish he is the one. But I wish I can work with somebody who is more younger.

“I prefer younger people with fresh ideas who have a lot to offer rather than recycling old hands. I want a competent person and I am building a formidable team.

“I want people who can look me in the eye and disagree with me during cabinet meetings. People who have their own minds and ideas. If you agree with me in three meetings then you are gone because that means you don’t have your own ideas. I want people and cabinet members who can say ‘Mr. President, you are wrong’.”

However, it was gathered that Baba-Ahmed and Obi, spent the better part of Tuesday night meeting with some northern elders and other crucial Nigerians on the viability of their combination, with indications that the coast was almost clear for the duo.

Baba-Ahmed, a 46-year-old academic, businessman, and politician, is from Kano in northern Nigeria.

From 2003 to 2007, he served in the House of Representatives. In April 2011, he was elected senator for Kaduna North in Nigeria’s Kaduna State on the platform of the Congress for Progressive Change.

He was a member of the Peoples Democracy Party and one of the candidates for president, until last May, when he, like Peter Obi, withdrew from the race before the party’s national convention.

Read Also: 2023: NLC, TUC endorses ‘Finest’ Peter Obi

To beat deadline set by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Obi had submitted the name of a former presidential spokesperson, Dr. Doyin Okupe, as a place holder, pending the determination of a suitable partner.

The former Anambra State governor, has since been consulting on the options before him, including playing with the possibility of an alliance with the New Nigeria People’s Party, whose presidential candidate, Rabiu Kwankwaso, would rather Obi were his running mate.

But that understanding broke down irretrievably, prompting the choice of Baba-Ahmed, which many see as suitable for the combination and in sync with current yearning by Nigerians.