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Published On: Fri, Jan 26th, 2018

UPP already providing third force platform, Party replies Obasanjo

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By Ikechukwu Okaforadi

The United Progressives Party (UPP) yesterday replied ex President Olusegun Obasanjo’s letter to President Mohammadu Buhari, saying that the UPP has already provided the third force platform in the political circumstance of the country.
Speaking yesterday in Abuja, the Chairman of the party, Chekwas Okorie, said the party is already a third force as Obasanjo advocated, adding that there is an ongoing negotiation between the UPP and other political parties to form a political coalition that will clinch the presidency in 2019.
The UPP chairman also said the party is will bring into the new political arrangement the different pressure groups who are desirous of genuine change and who share similar interest with the UPP manifesto to make the new party much more formidable for the task ahead.
He commended Obasanjo for recognizing and acknowledging the fact that the third force which UPP has provided is not only desirable but long overdue, adding that the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) which is contending space with UPP in the East had already adopted Buhari for 2019.
To this end, Okorie said the APGA has lost the chances of being part of the coalition and has equally lacked the capacity to provide the much talked about third force, adding that the UPP has not foreclosed the chances of working with other opposition parties in the North and the West to enthrone a broadly accepted political third force in Nigerian politics.
According to him, “We had prepared for this more than a year ago, in our non elective convention held last June in Awka, we ratified our constitution and manifesto to include restructuring of Nigeria and self determination of ethnic nationalities, devolution of powers and creation of state police, referendum and so many of the highlights of the 2014 National Confab.
“We are the only political party registered today in INEC with known social contract between the party and the citizens, so you can see that UPP has laid foundation for what is happening today. And to make matters easier for us, the APGA that is contending for space with us in the south east has openly adopted Buhari for the 2019 election.
“So that has already confined APGA to whatever APC belongs. Obasanjo knows that the way the country is cannot make for stability and economic growth of this country, especially disunity which is paramount. So PDP and APC in both their content and character of their membership and leadership can provide what is needed to unite, develop Nigeria and welfare of Nigerians by creating jobs”, he said.
He said the idea of a third force, which the party has been promoting, is what the ex President has openly endorsed, even though he did not say that it is the UPP that is going to anchor it. He said the political encounter which Nigerians will face between now and 2019 is such that must be driven by a political party, which UPP is the platform for that.

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