LP accuses Soyinka of exhibiting dual character, ignorance of constitutional breaches during 2023 general elections

Prof Wole Soyinka

By Williams Ago

The Labour Party has described Professor Wole Soyinka's recent comments about its performance in the last general elections as an exhibition of the Professor's clear ignorance to some of the obvious breaches of theits country's constitution and electoral act by INEC, the ruling APC and its presidential candidate during the 2023 general elections.

National Publicity Secretary of the Party, Obiora Ifoh, in a reaction to the Nobel Laureate's statement through a press release, said the LP disagrees with Professor Wole's prognosis and personal opinion on the performance of the party during the general elections.

The party said that the facts are before the courts and that out of respect for the judiciary, it will reserve it's comments until the Supreme Court makes a final pronouncement. 

"We understand that the literary giant is human and thus susceptible to emotions and probably said what he said based on information made available to him by those who share the ‘Emilokan sentiment’," the press statement noted.

It said further, "In Yoruba, 'Gbajue' (which the Nobel Laureate made reference to), refers to fraudulent activities like age, name or certificate forgery, 419 or narcotics trafficking, all of which are issues in the 2023 elections but not on the Labour Party’s part.”

LP recalls that ‘Gbajue' in Yoruba also literally means 'slap him/her in the face,' and wonders if all Nigerians have not been slapped sufficiently in the face? Adding, “Thanks to this man of letters for bringing this out albeit, advertently.”                                                                        

It stated also that, "It's rather interesting that the erudite Prof, 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".

It described as, most befudling, as well as disconcerting, that a detribalized and activist Soyinka would succumb to the groupthink syndrome that subscribes to state capture by those belonging to the criminal fringe by any means, based on primordial considerations.

"We really appreciate him for at least giving some credits to Labour Party and its Presidential candidate for breaking the monopoly of power hitherto held by the two other parties. 

"We also noted his admission of his willingness to be part of a demonstration, which would be based on the banner of truth", but however stress that, "we are aware that Soyinka resides in Lagos state and he was in Nigeria on February 25 when elections held in Nigeria. 

"He watched probably with a glee when a certain individual in Lagos warned non-indigenes to vote a particular political party or risk being deported to their place of birth, and he never condemned it. 

"He was there when ballot boxes were snatched by thugs in a polling booth right in front of his house, he didn't condemn it. We are still looking for where he came out to condemn the unprovoked attacks on our supporters in Lagos by members of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, during the last elections", the party emphasized.

The LP said that the whole world followed the 2023 general election in Nigeria where there was a global condemnation of not only the outcome of the election but also the process, particularly, the 'glitching' incidence that occured only during the transmission of presidential result to IREV. 

It challenged Prof Soyinka, saying, "As someone who is known to demonstrate based on truth, we didn't hear as much as a whisper from Kongi reminding INEC to stand by its word.

"He also watched when Labour Party provided evidences of several defaced result sheets permitted and uploaded to the IREV by INEC particularly in places where Labour Party won. Again the great Soyinka was astonishingly mute.

"We will not allege selective amnesia as the reason for Soyinka's wrong prognosis but we would have expected him to be a statesman, which we thought he was by remaining on the side of caution and not exhibiting dual character of someone who may be blinded by some chauvinistic tendencies. 

"We would rather keep our impression about his recent dual personality with us. We want to also let him know that building a New Nigeria is a dream, which time has come and Nigerian youths will not relent until such dream is realized", the Party said.

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