Peter Obi Like Emmanuel Macron And Barrack Obama | Emmanuel Usoro
LIKE EMMANUEL MACRON AND BARRACK OBAMA, PETER OBI BRINGS THE MESSAGE OF HOPE
Emmanuel Macron, France’s incumbent President, first became very well known to the French public after his remarkable appearance on the French TV programme “Woods and Deeds” (Des Paroles Et Des Actes) in March 2015, when he was the Minister of Economy and Industry appointed into the thirty-eighth government of the French Fifth Republic.
Similarly, on October 1, 2016, Pastor Poju Oyemade, the founder and Senior Pastor of Covenant Christian Centre, hosted Mr. Peter Obi as one of the guest speakers on “The Platform.” A national, popular annual event on leadership, business, creativity, and national empowerment. Like Macron, Obi had a remarkable appearance and speech bordering on cutting the cost of governance, especially during that time of recession, while also highlighting his experience and achievements as the governor of Anambra state. It was on this day that many young Nigerians got to know Peter Obi.
That day, Peter Obi’s moving speech outlining his desire for a better Nigeria went viral online. Moreso, that day was actually the country’s independence day, which was accompanied by the usual routine speech by the President of the country, His Excellency Muhammadu Buhari, which happened a few hours prior to Mr. Obi’s presence on that stage.
However, according to Google, his speech was the most popular trend, with everyone actually talking about it. For Obi’s speech to overwhelm the speech of the president of the nation on the nation’s most patriotic holiday, is quite an accomplishment.
The autobiographies of Macron and Obi look similar. Like Macron, who read philosophy at Paris Nanterre University, Obi also read philosophy at the University of Nigeria, commonly referred to as UNN. They both ventured into the banking sector, with Macron being an investment banker, where he grew to become a managing director of Rothschild & Co Bank. The outstanding deals and astute achievements went on to give him a share of the fees of a $9 billion deal, where he became a millionaire. On the other hand, Obi ventured into the corporate world, as he usually calls it, where he grew to become the youngest Chairman of Fidelity Bank Plc, with outstanding achievements coupled with his major shares in three commercial banks. We can conclude that these two men are/were phenomenal at wealth creation, which explains their public wealth creation and competitive economic philosophy.
THE DESIRE TO SEE THEIR COUNTRY WORK
In a bid to actualize his economic ideas and policies for France, which were turned down by the then government. On April 6, 2016, Macron would later find himself forming an independent political party called En Marche. This was done amidst tensions and deterioration of relations with the incumbent President of France, François Hollande, whose government he was serving as a minister. This generated questions about his loyalty to the government.
Well, less than a year before the first and second rounds of the general elections, Macron and his movement gained massive support from the online and print media. On August 30th, 2016, Macron resigned from the President Hollande government, with 84% of the French supporting his resignation and movement, according to a poll conducted by the French Institute of Public Opinion (IFIP), an international polling and market research firm. In the same vein, Obi resigned his membership of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, when it became obvious that the practices in the build up of the party’s presidential primaries were against his personal standards as a person, and went on to the Labour Party to lead a movement for Nigerians who desired true change in the country.
All online opinion polls, even the polls created by the supporters of the opposition party in the media, have seen Obi winning by a wide margin.
This has led many opposition candidates and supporters to mock Obi’s campaign, calling him “the media candidate”, and stating that he will win elections on social media and that he has no structure for winning elections. Similarly, the Macron campaign was consistently labeled by the opposition as the “media candidate,” especially due to the considerable coverage from the media he enjoyed after his formal declaration of his candidacy for the French presidency on November 16, 2016.
In disagreement with the “lack of structure” comments by the opposition, Dr. Yusuf Datti Baba-Ahmed, the vice presidential candidate of the Labour Party, has stated confidently that the social media will vote in the coming elections. Even Obi has stated severally that “Whenever I hear of no structure, my answer to it is simple; the 100 million Nigerians that live in poverty will be the structure; the 35 million Nigerians who don’t know where their next meal will come from will be the structure; the elderly, our mothers, fathers, and the old ones dying or being owed gratuity/pension will be the structure; the lecturers that are being owed and the students who are not in school will be the structure; we’ll create the structure, and they’ll see what the structure is all about. The structure is about human beings. “
In all of this, one thing is/was peculiar about Obi and Macron, they aren’t/weren’t desperate to be leaders of their country, but they are/were desperate to see positive changes to their country.
OBAMA’S MESSAGE OF HOPE AND CHANGE
Let me also recount the situation of Barrack Obama, the United States’ first African-American president, who declared his candidacy to run for president on February 10, 2007. This was a time where America was facing so many challenges bordering on security, healthcare systems, and many others. Obama brought an electrifying campaign of hope and change, a campaign similar to the theme of Peter Obi’s campaign.
Obama faced numerous challenges as his popularity grew across the country, most notably those related to his race, the people of colour. The possibility of a black man becoming the president of the United States looked unachievable, but with the message of hope, coupled with the increasing support, even from the white power brokers, fundraising, and numerous volunteer movements and donations. He went on to win his party’s ticket and the presidential election.
Today, Obi is faced with challenges bordering on his tribe (Igbo) and the region (South East) of the country he is from, coupled with the increasing secession agitation by the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), due to the marginalization of the region since the Nigerian civil war. But with the growing Obi’s message of hope and change to the status quo, like Obama’s case, power brokers across the country have started rallying around the candidacy of Peter Obi. This includes, former President of Nigeria Olusegun Obasanjo, the Afenifere and Ohanaeze groups, Chairman of the Northern Elders Forum Anglo Abdullahi, the elder brother of the vice presidential candidate (Dr. Yusuf Datti Baba-Ahmed) of the Labour Party and spokesman of the Northern Elders Forum, Dr. Hakeem Baba-Ahmed, Former Military President of Nigeria Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida, and a host of many others. This is coupled with the teeming Nigeria youths whose hopes have been reawakened due to Peter Obi’s “from consumption to production” agenda. This also includes the elderly who are yet to receive their gratuities and pension, federal tertiary institution students, and lecturers who have been kept at home for over 5 months due to the ongoing Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) strike and the unfortunate shut down of our universities.
THE STRENGTH OF A MOVEMENT OF VOLUNTEERS
A political party like the Labour Party, which didn’t have widespread branches, has seen people voluntarily donating their buildings for ward and chapter offices as well as meeting points for the growing volunteer group for discussing strategies and coordinating fundraising and donations for the movement.
This is familiar with the case of Macron, who within a few months was able to garner donations, fundraising, and support for his candidacy under the newly formed En Marche party. Macron even got the endorsement of the then-incumbent President Hollande, who felt betrayed when Macron resigned from his government. At the age of 39, Macron went on to win the election of May 7, 2017, becoming the youngest president in French history.
In the same measure, we have barely 7 months to Nigeria’s general election, which is similar to the short time Macron had to actualize the historic democratic revolution, with the masses and key stalwarts giving their unapologetic support to him. In that same vein, Obi can actualize the reawakening of a new Nigeria as the support keeps growing from important statesmen in the country and, most particularly amongst the young people, the largest voting index. As they often say, a night is a long time in politics.
LIKE MACRON AND OBAMA, MAY OBI WIN
In Obama’s re-election victory speech, addressing his supporters and volunteers at Chicago’s McCormick Place, he said that “Tonight you voted for action, not politics as usual. You elected us to focus on your jobs, not ours. And in the coming weeks and months, I am looking forward to reaching out and working with the leaders of both parties.”
It will be historic to see Nigerians actively participate in the presidential elections of February 25th, 2023 as we seek to vote for action and not politics as usual. The intensity is growing, the awareness is building. Like Macron and Obama, may Obi win.
Usoro Emmanuel is a graduate of the Department of Animal and Environmental Biology, Faculty of Sciences, University of Uyo.
He has interest in Theatre, Copywriting, Leadership, Politics, Environment and a host of other fascinating fields. "Excellence at all times" is his slogan.
During his university days he participated actively in student's unionism were he served as a law maker. He has also written and published some articles on some published magazines.
He is a Professional Copywriter, Content Creator and Event compère. He is also a Columnist at Ray of Thoughts. He loves to listen to Hymns while he writes.