Former Anambra State governor, Peter Obi, says he will join the 2023 presidential race if his party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), zones its ticket to the South or throws the contest open.

Mr Obi who was quoted by his media aide, Valentine Obienyem, in a statement, as saying so during a media briefing on Monday, claimed he is capable of shouldering the burden of the country but will wait on the decision of the opposition party before declaring his intention.

The national publicity secretary of the PDP, Debo Ologunagba, recently hinted that the party will throw its ticket open and not disenfranchise any aspirant of the party regardless of where they come from.

“All the elections that I followed in the past, the party that I belong to today, the PDP made a pronunciation and took a stand,” the vice presidential candidate of the PDP in the last general election said. “At least in 2019 when I was involved, where I can say Atiku graciously chose me as his running mate which I remain eternally grateful to him for, the party decided that the candidate should come from the North and that was what the party decided.

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“And I believe that the party owes it a duty to say what their stand is. If their stand today is South, be rest assured I am aspiring, if they say North, I can’t do otherwise or they chose the option that everybody is free, then, of course, you will be hearing from me.”

He said what the country needs at this point is someone who is competent enough to pilot the affairs of the nation.

“What we are looking for in this country today are people of integrity, people of conscience, people who are less greedy. Educational qualification is not a measure of integrity; it doesn’t guarantee that somebody is less greedy or that people have a conscience.

“I have seen people here acquire what they don’t need. I saw it while I was serving, to fight corruption here, you need somebody who has integrity, who is not greedy, who has a conscience if you have that, fighting corruption is easy, because, if you who is in charge is not stealing, you will reduce stealing by 50 to 70 per cent.

“And it is critical that you have somebody who is like that. It is not when people are acquiring lands, houses, everything they don’t need; they want to live a lifestyle that is far beyond the economy of Nigeria, far beyond their earnings, that is why the place is collapsing. That is why we have insecurity, that is why we have poverty. We need to manage the costs efficiently and these are the critical areas as you people know as you look for people who will govern the country in the future,” he added.

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