In gory videos shared on the internet today, supporters of the Labour Party’s candidate, Peter Gregory Obi have been seen lynching supporters of the All Progressive Congress Candidate, Bola Ahmed Tinubu. The videos, shared across social media platforms show Labour Party supporters slapping and maiming persons who appeared to have voted for the APC in their polling units.
This tallies with news of widespread cases of bullying across the South East where non-Labour Party members were reported to have been disenfranchised. Specific incidents in Anambra, Peter Obi’s home state, saw APC voters identified and prevented from exercising their franchise under the threat of violence which, in many cases, resulted in physical assaults and undue harassment.
The ugly development is considered by several analysts as the fruit of Obi’s ethnicized campaign, in which he appealed to base sentiments of tribe and religion, portraying dissenting citizens in the eastern region as betrayals and enemies of their tribe.
It also brings to fore Obi’s dark legacy in Anambra State where, in a bid to retain his office as governor, he reportedly pitted Catholics against Anglicans, two branches of the same Christian faith.
Election observers have expressed concern over the violence recorded in the eastern region and the insidious targeting of non-Labour Party voters and members of other ethnic groups suspected to be unsupportive of Peter Obi.