Another divisive row is building in the Labour Party following reports that its national leadership has issued a query to the Kogi State chapter over the poorly attended rally staged in the state earlier on Tuesday in which its presidential candidate and his running mate, Peter Obi and Baba Ahmed-Datti, were met by only a handful of people.
The query, which has rubbed off the state chapter in the worst possible way, affirms previous reports that the Kogi rally was a disaster, despite initial attempts to deny the fact.
According to inside sources, the national leadership of the party was angered by the choice of a stadium by the state chapter, a choice it said magnified the failure of the event and made it very obvious that the crowd that greeted Obi’s arrival was insignificant.
The source said, “there are insinuations that the state chapter of the party was rather too eager to showcase Obi’s unpopularity in the state. Otherwise, how do you explain the choice of a stadium where poor attendance would be impossible to hide? The anger is that they could have chosen a smaller venue and perhaps even reworked the purpose of the visit so that the candidate and campaign can look good.”
Meanwhile, it appears the state chapter is bent on fighting the query. Feelers from its Lokoja office suggest that the state executives are offended at allegations of sabotage, with many of them hinting that Obi’s unpopularity in the state is no fault of theirs.
“At the state level, they are quite pissed that they are being blamed for the embarrassing show,” our source said. “Some of them are wondering why the national leadership is pointing fingers when they are cornering all donations and refusing to part with any to the states for proper mobilization and grassroots engagement.”
“If not properly managed, this could have the same effect as in Ogun state where the Labour Party is now all but dead,” the source concluded.