Peter Obi, the Labour Party’s presidential candidate, has received praise from Babachir Lawal, a former secretary to the government of the federation (SGF).

He claims that “unexpected areas” are showing support for Peter Obi.

In an interview with Channels Television on Friday, Lawal stated that the growing popularity of the LP will surprise detractors.

The former SGF opposed Bola Tinubu’s (APC) presidential candidate Kashim Shettima’s pick of Kashim Shettima as his running mate in July 2022 in favor of the Muslim-Muslim ticket.

Before Shettima was selected as the APC’s vice presidential candidate, Lawal initially led the campaign for Tinubu.

Lawal supported Obi in November 2022, claiming that the former governor of Anambra’s candidacy is proof of the sincere call for a change in leadership.

Speaking on Obi’s chances in the general election, Lawal predicted that the LP candidate will receive more than 50% of the votes cast in most of the northern Nigerian states.

“On the side of the Labour Party, what has changed is that areas where we had not expected the Labour Party to do well; they are galloping through,” he said.

“The momentum is so much that it is difficult to curtail.

“When the 2023 election season commenced, Peter Obi was not on the card during the computations as to what will happen and the expectation was that the race was a straight one between APC and PDP.

“Out of nowhere, Peter Obi came in and then followed by Rabiu Kwankwaso. The whole permutations changed.

“Unfortunately for the two parties — APC and PDP — they don’t have the capacities to factor this dynamic.

“As you speak, Peter Obi has run PDP out of Adamawa, Taraba, Plateau, Benue, and Kaduna states and quite a number of states in the north.

“Before, in our calculations, we were targeting 25 percent, but now we are targeting within 55 to 70 percent in the majority of the states in the north.”

Speaking on the comment of Nasir el-Rufai, Kaduna governor, that Obi can’t win, the former SGF said el-Rufai will be shocked by the outcome of the election.

“Every Nigerian is now determined to have a say in this election, including those who Nasir el-Rufai claimed are not many. He said northern Christians are not many,” Lawal added.

“I want him to wait for February 25 and he will see the shock of his life. When he goes around bandying about five and six million votes in Kano, he forgets that in that five and six million, the Igbo are about one million, residing in various towns in Kano.”

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