Despite its outstanding performance during the February 25 presidential election, the Labour Party failed to secure any seat when Nigerians came out to vote for their preferred governorship candidates across different political parties in 28 states of the federation on March 18.
The presidential race was seen as the most competitive in Nigeria’s political history, with Peter Obi, candidate of Labour Party posing a credible challenge to the two traditional main parties.
Though he came third behind the winner, Bola Tinubu from the ruling All Progressives Congress (LP) and main opposition People’s Democratic Party’s (PDP) Atiku Abubakar, Obi was able to win in 12 states, scoring over six million votes.
Meanwhile, the dynamics changed after the presidential election as APC and PDP won the governorship race in the states they earlier lost to the Labour Party.
While the APC won 15 states with 7.7 million votes, the PDP already won 9 states with 5.8 million votes. The NNPP which won Kano had 1.1 million votes and the LP with zero state had only 689, 726 votes in all the governorship polls.
Battabox recalls that the Labour Party won Lagos during the presidential election. But things changed on Saturday as APC’s Babajide Sanwo-Olu massively defeated the candidate of the Labour Party, Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour .
In another instance, Plateau voted for LP’s Peter Obi in the presidential election, but the party could not secure a governorship position in the state.
Also, the Obi tsunami had no life in Rivers, Cross River and other Southern states.
Though there was improvement in logistics by INEC, a fact also commended by observer groups such as CDD and YIAGA as officials arrived earlier than in the presidential election and voting started early in many parts of the country.
But the governorship elections were characterised by more violence and vote buying than during the presidential election.