The vice presidential candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Peter Obi, on Wednesday in Abuja met separately with delegations from the European Union (EU) and the World Economic Forum (WEF).
He discussed the need for free and fair elections in 2019 as well as Nigeria’s economy.
A statement released by the Atiku campaign office and signed by Segun Sowunmi, said Obi stood in for the PDP presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, who is out of the country.
At the EU meeting, Obi told the body to prevail on the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) to stop intimidating candidates of opposition political parties.
“There is a need to get the country back to its feet and make it better for our children”, Obi was also quoted to have said.
He added that campaigns should be based on issues and that the EU should continue its support the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The former Anambra Governor recalled the gubernatorial elections in Ekiti and Osun states and warned that INEC needs to show that it remains an unbiased umpire in future elections.
On the issue of vote buying, Obi said, “I contested and won elections when I was in a smaller party.
“Where would I have gotten the money to buy votes if it was the case then and how would I have gotten back the money especially when I am going to serve the people”.
In his remarks, head of the EU delegation, Ketil Karlsen was quoted to have said that the election observer group has been consulting stakeholders in Nigeria to ascertain whether or not it would be necessary for the Union to send a new EU election observer mission.
However, at the WEF meeting, Obi lamented that many governments in Africa implement activities that are “transactional instead of transformational” and therefore needed help to shape their policies.
“A lot of work needs to be done in Africa because things are tough. The presidential and vice presidential candidates of the PDP have a clear picture of what the economic priorities are and what the international community feels about the country.
“Nigeria needs to do something immediately for its economy to be put back on track and something has to be done immediately”, the PDP VP candidate added.