Reports of potential merger discussions among the major opposition parties in Nigeria, including the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Labour Party (LP), and New Nigerian Peoples Party (NNPP), have been dismissed by party representatives.
Recent speculation suggested that prominent opposition figures Atiku Abubakar, Peter Obi, and Rabiu Kwankwaso were in talks to form a political alliance, possibly leading to a merger. The objective of this alliance was to challenge the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and contest power in the 2027 elections.
According to the reports, these leaders were waiting for the outcome of election petitions in court before deciding on their next course of action.
This development comes less than six months after the February 25 presidential election, which saw APC candidate President Bola Tinubu emerge victorious. Atiku and Obi were declared second and third, respectively, by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), with Kwankwaso from the NNPP coming in fourth.
While discussions about a potential alliance were ongoing before the 2023 general election, no merger materialized. Peter Obi, speaking at an LP rally in Edo State, affirmed the party’s dedication to building a better Nigeria centered on productivity rather than consumption.
Yunusa Tanko of the LP Presidential Campaign Council indicated on television that a merger was technically unattainable, but discussions about a working alliance were possible.
Former PDP National Chairman Okwesilieze Nwodo remarked that the three parties (PDP, LP, NNPP) may have realized their mistake in not collaborating earlier, potentially resulting in a stronger challenge to the APC.
However, Dada Olayinka Olabode, spokesperson for the Forum of State Chairmen of the NNPP, expressed the party’s disapproval of any merger or alliance without proper consultation with its members.
Amidst these speculations, a faction of Ohanaeze Ndigbo advised Peter Obi to consider joining forces with President Bola Tinubu rather than pursuing an alliance with Atiku Abubakar and Rabiu Kwankwaso, asserting that such an alliance would likely face resistance from the Nigerian populace.