Can the much-touted merger talks by opposition groups succeed?

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Chima Obi
Chima Obi
Haddy Ametuo
Haddy Ametuo

THE planned merger of the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, with the Congress for Progressive Change, CPC, has generated a lot of controversy in the last six months. Nigerians are sceptical that the merger will work this time around given what happened in the past where such attempt collapsed because of insincerity and selfishness of the leaders involved in the merger talk. Below is what Nigerians think about the proposed merger talk between the ACN and the CPC which is to be completed in June.

Solomon Ndokuro
Solomon Ndokuro

Chima Obi, businessman: Political merger only works in a society where there is sanity and transparency, and where political leaders are eager to serve the populace and not to play the boss. But in a political climate where dog eats dog method is always the norm, a situation where aspirants are egocentric and hell-bent on mounting the saddle not minding whose ox is gored, I don’t see its feasibility. I am not a dooms-day prophet, but looking back to previous political trends and events in Nigeria, I think such a merger is a sheer smoke screen.

Abdulazeez Ibrahim, lawyer: From the bottom of my heart, I believe that we must do certain things. First, remove zoning and two, federal character. After that, political position will now be purely on merit because if these parties still merge, they will still share these poitical positions along ethnic lines and at the end of the day, we will return to what PDP has been doing.

Obike Elezue
Obike Elezue

Haddy Ametuo, ACN chairman in Kogi State: This is a unique opportunity for the opposition parties to work and the dethrone PDP which has been ruling for years without delivering dividends of democracy to our people. I believe our national leaders would not allow this golden opportunity to slip off their hands.

Solomon Ndokuro, technician: The merger talks will collapse. Buhari has already said he would consider running again. The Tinubu camp would want to produce the president. This issue of who flies the merger party’s ticket will cause problem.

James Tse
James Tse

Obike Elezue, a trader: The political ambition of Mohammed Buhari, leader of the CPC and that of the ACN, Bola Tinubu, may jeopardise the merger. The merger plan will work if the two can put their personal ambitions behind them.

Jude Tse, member, Accord Party: We seriously need the merger in the political life of the country. A stronger opposition will strengthen democracy and force the ruling party to become more serious with governance.

Kingsley Chukwuma
Kingsley Chukwuma

Kingsley Chukwuma, trader: My prayers for them is let this merger work this time around. This is the only thing we need as a country now; I mean a strong opposition that will force the PDP to sit up. If this merger works out well, that means 2015 elections will be open to anyone. I’m tired of this PDP government likewise many other Nigerians. We need a change of government for good.

Compiled by Anayo Ezugwu.

— Feb. 4, 2013 @ 01:00 GMT

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