The Oasis Reporters
November 9, 2021
By Greg Abolo
None of the front-running protagonists of the Anambra gubernatorial election, Prof. Charles Chukwuma Soludo of All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, Dr. Valentine Ozigbo of The People’s Democratic Party, PDP and All Progressive Congress, APC’s, Andy Uba imagined that the town General Chukwuemeka Ojukwu made a touchdown at before moving to Uli Airport in order to head for exile with the last plane out of a crumbling Biafran enclave would hold the key to Government House, Awka.
It was not in their calculus because everything seemed right on the back of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC)’s promises and assurances of a hitchfree election.
But electoral equipment either failed to arrive or did not function, and the election at Ihiala has been rescheduled as ‘supplementary’ vote.
Ihiala holds the deciding over 148,000 votes and Anambra waits to hear from the valiant last defenders of Col. Ojukwu’s ill-fated Biafra in 1970.
Charles Soludo who later became Central Bank of Nigeria governor hadn’t been born then. Yet he thumps his chest, saying that Ihiala is APGA’s stronghold. He has expressed confidence that the ballots would go his way, after all has been said and done, APGA is Ojukwu’s party.
The man who seems to hold the least confidence in the essential Ihiala loving embrace is Andy Uba. Reports say that his APC may boycott Anambra supplementary gubernatorial poll, amid war of words. One of which is that he may head all the way to the Supreme Court and wait in ambushment for the leading Candidate, Charles Soludo. That was the Solution the APC deployed in Osun State, as well as neighboring Imo State. In the two instances, the Supreme Court handed victory to them, as opposed to what the Streets were saying. But they have the final say.
The APC party had placed third through its candidate, Andy Ubah, who scored a little above 40,000 votes, alleging that the exercise was fraught with irregularities and massive rigging. They rejected the outcome.
The All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) candidate, Charles Soludo, who led with 103,000 votes, was followed by Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate, Valentine Ozigbo, with over 51,000 votes.
The National Chairman of APGA, Victor Oye, has sneered at APC State chairman, Basil Ejidike, who had condemned the November 6 governorship election in the state, saying he would rather commend President Muhammadu Buhari for ensuring that Saturday’s Anambra governorship election was credible.
He said that Buhari had proved to be a father by giving the INEC free hands to conduct the election without interference.
Oye said, “President Muhammadu Buhari has always been a father by allowing INEC to conduct free, fair and credible elections in the country.
“He will also insist on allowing the people’s will to prevail and not the other way round.
“Left to some other people, the election would have been rigged in favour of another party.
“But he has always told them to allow the choice of the people to prevail, that is why APGA is winning the election.”
He commended residents of the state for the peaceful conduct of the election.
“Anambra people are known to be peaceful; the violence we had sometime ago was imported; our people are not in any way associated with violence,” he stressed.
Mr. Valentine Ozigbo, candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the Anambra governorship election, says he can still emerge victorious in the exercise that is expected to end on Tuesday with the supplementary poll in Ihalia LGA.
Addressing newsmen on the eve of the supplementary poll, Ozigbo said the election battle is not yet over.
According to him, there are over 248,000 votes at stake in Ihiala and other places where election did not take place.
Reports say there are 148,407 voters in Ihiala, the only LGA where INEC said the election did not hold.
In his address, Ozigbo appealed to the people of Ihiala to come out en masse and vote for PDP.
He lamented the impact of vote buying which he described as a major issue in the polity.
Ozigbo said as a party without the control of public funds, PDP could not have bought votes.
The PDP candidate asked INEC to conduct election in all the areas where people did not vote.
He said in many places, people came out in large numbers but were denied the opportunity to participate in the process.
However, he said he was only concerned with the supplementary election at the moment, adding that he would decide on his next line of action after the election.
Meanwhile, it should be recalled that if Charles Soludo wins, he would be the second Central Bank Governor to govern a State. Clement Isong was the first, having governed Cross River State (with Akwa Ibom as part) in the South Eastern part of the South South geopolitical zone.