Nobel Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, has spoken yet again at the recently concluded presidential election.
He said that the electoral victory of President Bola Tinubu was helped by the separation of Peter Obi, the Labour Party’s presidential candidate, and his former ally, Atiku Abubakar of the PDP
In a statement on Saturday, the Nobel Laureate expressed this opinion during a dialogue organized by ‘Africa in the World’ in Stellenbosch, South Africa.
According to the statement, Soyinka stressed the importance of politicians owning up to the consequences of their choices.
- “The mistake we all continue to make is our insistence on regarding the recent Nigerian elections as an adversarial thriller. The contrary is the truth. The ballot tally accurately reflected what happens when a political party splits itself in two, especially so critically close to an election.
- “What promised to be a spectacular contest is transformed into a Feast of Voluntary Donation of the spoils of war. That, however, is not always the ultimate destination – the re-gifting may continue, prodded by a sudden surge of regret. There remains, lurking in the background, a far more potent beneficiary.
- “In this case, we easily recall it as the unregistered but loudly canvassed IPP – the Interim Peoples Party, usually to be found in bed with the military. The notorious Datti interview, menacing, intimidating and unambiguous, sets the scene for such re-entry.
- “Then, history repeats itself over and over again, as currently manifested along the West African sub-region. The ‘call to arms’ is made literal by those whose trade is precisely that of arms.
- “Barring such abrupt ‘patriotic intervention,’ however, the last word belongs to the Supreme Court. Until that conclusive hour, wherever and whenever the subject turns to the Nigerian elections, my contribution can be taken for granted in advance: Peter Obi did not win the Nigerian 2023 elections. Jointly with his erstwhile colleague of the PDP, Abubakar Atiku, they donated the outcome, even before the voting,
- “Let politicians and their cohorts learn to take responsibility for the consequences of their choices within democratic options,” he said.
Earlier on Wednesday, during his speech at the same event, the Nobel Laureate accused the Labour Party of attempting to deceive Nigerians regarding the results of the February 25 election.
In response, The Labour Party criticized Soyinka, alleging that he displayed a “dual character” and fell victim to “groupthink syndrome” in his recent remarks on the party’s performance in the 2023 general elections.
LP’s spokesperson, Obiora Ifoh, said Soyinka’s comments the party was playing “Gbajue” (to force a lie) on Nigerians were “disconcerting” and “befuddling” coming from a “detribalized and activist statesman.”
“It’s rather interesting that the erudite Prof. Soyinka, who owned up to having an electoral “monitoring unit” conveniently glossed over INEC’s legerdemain leading to substantial non-compliance and erosion of constitutional dictates, just as he conveniently glossed over the INEC’s advanced ‘gbajue’ of 25 February that has surreptitiously installed the King of ‘gbajue’ in Aso Rock,” Ifoh said.