Vanguard (Lagos)

19 February 2013

Nigeria: Opposition Parties' Merger Won't Work - Ssepu

Yenagoa — National Chairman, South-South Elements Progressive Union, SSEP, Mr. Joseph Ambakederimo, Monday, dismissed the planned merger of opposition political parties in the country ahead of 2015 general elections, saying it will not work.

Ambakederimo, also Executive Director, Nigeria Rebirth Initiative, told Vanguard, in Yenagoa, that the merger will not stand the test of time because of the greed of Nigerian politicians.

He said: "Merger is not new in Nigerian politics. We have seen some alliances in the past that worked but there is a difference between alliance and merger. Political parties have merged before and we saw the fallout. They have just formed All Progressives Congress, APC, I don't see how far they can go.

"The greed in our politicians will not make them to settle down to discuss on how they can manage the positions. What have they done up till now? They have not come out with their manifesto, nor ideology of the party yet.

"We haven't seen the logo and we know that before 2015, there will be crack. Financial inducement from the ruling party cannot be ruled out. Already, we are hearing of persons being sponsored by the ruling party to discountenance the merger and withdraw from the merger that their parties are not part of it and not to support it.

"For me, I don't think it is a threat to Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, because the Nigerian opposition from the beginning cannot put their act together. After every election, they go to sleep. It is only when election is approaching that they come together.

"We have not seen their manifesto, which is what they should have done shortly after the election in 2011 to sensitise the people of their desire to wrest power from the ruling party."

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