A former governor of Cross River State Donald Duke has said he will not criminalise same-sex relationships if he becomes Nigeria's president in 2019.

The Social Democratic Party (SDP) has pulled out of the Coalition of United Political Parties (CUPP), a group of over 45 opposition political parties.

The party, which has former Cross River State governor, Donald Duke, as its presidential candidate in the forthcoming general elections, said it will begin its campaign on December 19.

National Publicity Secretary of the party, Alpha Mohammed, in a terse statement, Tuesday morning, in Abuja, announcing the development, did not however give reason why the party pulled out.

In the statement, the party’s scribe promised releasing a detailed statement on the issue later in the day.

Recall that shortly after the coalition of the CUPP issued a statement announcing the adoption of Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), as its consensus candidate for the 2019 poll last week, SDP came out to distance itself from the union, claiming it had never taken any step to that effect.

The statement which was released by Alpha Mohammed, following the CUPP’s action and titled: “SDP NWC to meet, issue statement on CUPP endorsement of Atiku next week”, read: “The attention of our great party, the Social Democratic Party (SDP) has been drawn to a statement issued Wednesday by the National Spokesperson for the Coalition of United Political Parties (CUPP), Ikenga Imo Ugochinyere to the effect that the coalition had endorsed the Presidential Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as consensus candidate of the opposition for 2019 presidential election.

“Be that as it may, we want to enjoin the general public, SDP faithfuls, especially all our candidates to carry on with their campaigns effectively, irrespective of the development.

“We assure you that the SDP National Working Committee (NWC) will meet and issue appropriate statement on the matter next week.”

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