Obi: The man Atiku banks on to win hearts of Igbo


If PDP succeeds in ousting the incumbent President Muhammadu Buhari, come February 16, 2019; Peter Obi as the running mate to Atiku Abubakar, is the man who will constitutionally be in charge of the Nigerian economy.

The Onitsha-born philosopher turned politician boasts of a very rich profile in the banking and corporate world. He has held several managerial positions in different firms and companies in the past.

Notable among them are Next International Nigeria Limited, Guardian Express Bank Plc, Chams Nigeria Plc, Future View Securities, just to name a few. He rose to the pinnacle of his corporate career when he became the youngest Chairman of Fidelity Bank Plc.

Peter Obi forayed into the Nigerian political arena when he contested for the Anambra State Gubernatorial election in 2003, but lost to Chris Ngigie. But he had to wait for three years, before reclaiming his mandate. He was impeached in November 2006 but also reclaimed his mandate through the Court of Appeal in February 2007.

The former banking chief was booted out of power with the 2007 general election, despite not completing his four-year gubernatorial mandate at the time of the election. However, for the third time, the 57-year old was returned to the Anambra Government House to finish his four-year tenure after winning the Supreme Court case challenging his removal.

He took over from Andy Uba, who had already been elected as the Anambra Governor in the 2017 general election. The UNN alumnus won a second tenure in office, as Anambra Governor in 2010 and ended his second term in 2014.

He is not new to the Nigerian economic terrain, having served as the Honorary Special Adviser to President Goodluck Jonathan on Finance till May 2015. He was also a member of Jonathan’s Presidential Economic Management Team until the regime was ousted by President Buhari in 2015. He was also the former Chairman of the Board of Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

He is still a member of the Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG) and the Nigerian Chartered Institute of Bankers.

The PDP presidential running mate bagged a B.A. in Philosophy from the University of Nigeria, Nnsuka in 1984, before attending a Chief Executive Programme at the Lagos Business School. He later took Mid Marketing and Changing the Game programmes at the prestigious Harvard Business School in Boston, USA.

The former Anambra Governor was also an Alumnus of the famous London School of Economics, where he took Financial Management/Business Policy courses. He was equally at the Columbia Business School in New York for a Marketing Management course among others. He also attended Oxford University, Cambridge University, Institute of Management Development, Switzerland among others.

Peter Obi has won several awards among which was the Sun Newspaper’s Man of the Year (2007), Thisday Newspaper’s Most Prudent Governor in Nigeria (2009), Champion Newspaper’s Nigeria’s Most Trustworthy Governor (2009), West Africa ICT Development Award for Governor of the Year (2010), Zik Leadership Prize (2011), Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Best Performing Governor on Immunization in South-East Nigeria (2012), and many more others.