Presidential election: Soyinka seeks alternative to Buhari, Atiku


Tobi Ijalana

The Nobel laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, has said that he will not vote for either of the candidates of the two leading political parties in the coming election.

According to him, neither of them deserves the people’s votes even as he urged Nigerians to go for credible alternatives.

Soyinka, who, like many other Nigerians, faced a similar situation in 2015, but leaned towards what many regarded as the lesser evil, spoke on the political situation on Thursday at an interactive session in Lagos.

At the event held at Freedom Park, Onikan, he said, ““For the avoidance of doubt, let me make my position quite clear because I don’t want any ambiguity; I, Wole Soyinka, will not be voting for either the two so-called contesting parties. I find both of them worthy of absolute rejection.

“For a number of reasons which I will not go into here, I’m not interested in a comparative assessment. My position is simply that it is time for a totally new direction. And obviously, I’m not the only one, as I’m speaking, there is a coalition having its meeting in Lagos from which they hope to produce a consensus candidate.

“There is another group meeting in Abuja, also at the end would send us their consensus candidate. Things have been going on quietly in the background to try and change the direction of this nation in a very positive way and to make the public understand that they do not have to be enslaved permanently to the old discredited order. It is my sole business in this election.

“I don’t believe in what is called negative vote which means, for me, throwing your vote in a wastebasket, I believe instead in a creative vote, not a protest vote, not a negative vote but a creative vote.

“And a creative vote means that the will to at least sow a seed through your vote that will germinate eventually. The pace of germination is beyond the control of everyone, but it is never too early to make a beginning. It has happened before in other societies. When a dark horse emerges from nowhere and trumps all the political juggernauts caterpillars and so on with their performers, worthless, their capacity for violence and treachery.”

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