Authorities in the United States have granted permission to supporters of Labour Party presidential candidate Peter Obi to use a park to protest the outcome of the 2023 presidential election in Nigeria.
The permit allows about 100 protesters to converge on the iconic Lafayette Park in Washington D.C. on April 3 for four hours. Located across the street from the White House, the park is a prominent fixture in American history.
“We in the diaspora are demonstrating to call the attention of the US government and Biden administration to not recognize the winner,” the organisers said.
The United States Department of said the organisers and anyone at the protest must “comply with all reasonable directions of the United States Park Police”.
The protesters were warned that “all sideways, walkways and roadways must remain unobstructed to allow for the reasonable use of these areas by pedestrians, vehicles, and other park visitors.”
Peter Obi supporters’ protest in the United States
The protest is organised by a pro-Peter Obi group, Nigerian American Coalition for Justice and Democracy Inc.
Obi, a former governor of Anambra State, lost the election to Bola Tinubu, a former Lagos State governor and candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).
A document seen by The Guardian shows that the organiser of the protest is one Franklin Ekechukwu.
Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Wednesday, March 1, announced Tinubu as the winner of the presidential election. A total of 18 candidates contested.
INEC said Tinubu polled 8,794,726 votes to defeat fellow contenders – Atiku Abubakar of the opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP) who polled 6,984,520 votes, Labour Party’s Peter Obi had 6,101,533 votes to come third and candidate of the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) Rabiu Kwankwaso with 1,496,687 votes.
Abubakar and Obi said the election was flawed and accused the ruling APC and the electoral body of rigging the ballot in Tinubu’s favour.
Both candidates want the court to order INEC to pronounce them as the winner of the election and declare that Tinubu was not qualified to run for office of Nigeria president.