Presidential Candidate of Labour Party, Mr Peter Obi, has denied describing the 2023 elections as a religious war, saying he is under pressure to go on exile.
In an audio that leaked over the weekend, Obi was heard telling Bishop David Oyedepo, Founder of Living Faith Church Worldwide, to help him canvass votes of Christians.
He also said the election was a religious war and he needed the help of the influential man of God to get through to the South West and Kwara State.
But in a series of tweets on Wednesday night, Obi denied the conversation and said he would take legal action against Peoples Gazette, the online platform that released the audio.
The present attempts by the APC as a Party, and the APC Led-government through some government officials and agencies to divert our attention from our blatantly stolen mandate is unfortunate and sad.
“These have come and continued to manifest in different ways, such as the malicious accusation of the Minister of Information, Mr. Lai Mohammed, the circulation of a fake doctored audio call, and a pressure on me to leave the country.
“Let me reiterate that the audio call being circulated is fake, and at no time throughout the campaign and now did I ever say, think, or even imply that the 2023 election is, or was a religious war,” Obi said.
Speaking on the February 25 presidential election that he is contesting at the election tribunal, after coming third behind, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu of the APC and Alhaji Atiku Abubakar of the PDP, Obi said, “Before, during, and after the campaign, it is on record that I have maintained my commitment and focus on issue-based campaign about a New Nigeria that is possible, a shift of emphasis from consumption to production, a New Nigeria characterized by inclusion, justice, equity, fairness, and prosperity.
“I repeatedly stated that no one should vote for me based on tribe or religion, but rather on the assessment of character, competence, capacity, credibility, and compassion that can be trusted to create a New Nigeria!.
“The attempts to manipulate Nigerians is very sad and wicked. Our legal team have been instructed to take appropriate legal actions against Peoples Gazette and others.
“While we call on all concerned Nigerians and the International Community to implore the APC and the APC Led-government to stop their nasty attacks, my focus and commitment to lawfully and peacefully retrieve our mandate to secure and unite our Nation, take Nigeria from consumption to production, pull millions of Nigerians out of multidimensional poverty especially in the North, and jumpstart prosperity through agricultural, industrial, and technological revolution remain unchanged.
“Elections are over, and we are in court to retrieve our stolen mandate. Let me reiterate that we are doing so through all lawful and peaceful options in line with our legal system and constitution, and I continue to implore all Nigerians to remain peaceful and law abiding.
“Those fixated with heating up the polity, creating divisions, tensions and hatred within and outside Nigeria should remember that Nigeria is our only country. Our focus should be on how to address the litany of challenges facing us, such as: flawed electoral processes, the parlous state of our economy, unsustainable debt burden, lamentable unemployment and inflation, insecurity, and multi-dimensional poverty. A New Nigeria is indeed POssible, and God will help us,” Obi said.