Asserting that online agitation is distinct from grassroots mobilisation, Governor Yahaya Bello on Monday disregarded the Anap poll that favoured Labour Party (LP) presidential candidate Peter Obi.
The poll results, which were announced last week, showed that the former governor of Anambra is far ahead of the candidates for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, and the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu.
APC leader Bello, however, acknowledged that while Obi is succeeding, the LP candidate’s support base is primarily found online, a phenomenon he claims does not translate to grassroots mobilisation.
“Peter Obi – I respect him. A gentleman, one-time governor; a businessman who everyone knows has engaged in several businesses including the importation of the majority of the products we consume today in the country,” the Kogi governor said during an appearance on Channels Television’s Politics Today.
“He is doing well in his own right, but let me tell you: online agitation is different from grassroots movements and mobilisation.”
The governor noted that multiple surveys performed in the state’s north-central region before his reelection in 2019 predicted his defeat in the contest.
“I laughed because they are not on the ground. They fly in the sky. They don’t move by the road,” the 47-year-old maintained.
“They don’t have a connection at all with the people. I knew exactly what I had put on the ground and the connectivity I had on the ground, and I won the election like never before in the history of Kogi State.”
He also dismissed claims that Obi has the backing of Nigerian youths going into next year’s poll.
“Well, during the contest before the presidential primaries of all political parties, the only person that commands respect and control of Nigerian youths is Governor Yahaya Bello,” he said during the show.