Anambra Polls: Our People Now Know Better – Analysts

The youths in Anambra State are more enlightened and involved in determining who leads the state and this has led to a better sense of purpose by the candidates vying to lead the state.

This was a view expressed by Anambra State Co-ordinator of non-governmental youth organisation, known as Wakeup Call, Ifeanyi Aniago while appearing on a special edition of Channels Television’s Politics Today, live from Awka, Anambra State.

Also on the programme to do a post-mortem of the Anambra State Governorship Townhall Conversation was a member of the Anambra League of Professionals, Chike Nwegbe and Managing Editor of Telegraph Nigeria, Cheta Nwanze.

Speaking on the state of insecurity in the state, Mr. Nwegbe said “we are in agreement with most of the politicians that the major issue we have to address is how to engage our youths constructively, empower them with new skills, and again create wealth for the economy.”

Cheta Nwanze however highlighted industrialization as the top priority for the people of Anambra State; he believes that a proper drive for industrialization will ensure that the problem of insecurity, unemployment and education are solved.

When there is a plan to develop industries, there will be the need to employ people, a situation he said would mandate proper training of youths with the appropriate skills to be employed and be less interested in crime, thereby helping to reduce the insecurity in the state.

He also explained that if the next administration in the state fails to solve the problem of massive congestion and traffic delays in Onitsha town, which is the commercial hub of the state, the effect of it will be that goods from the state will be more expensive due to cost of transportation, and this will be counter-productive to the drive for industrialization in the state.

Speaking in agreement, Mr Nwegbe also highlighted that Anambra citizens are more interested in deliverables as shown in Nwanze’s demands on fixing Onitsha. This, according to him, is a proof that politicians cannot deceive them with promises anymore, but rather they will be asking for a leader that has the experience to clearly communicate and deliver on his manifesto.

Citing the statistics released by Independent National Electoral Committee (INEC) that 52% of Anambra electorates are youths from age 18 to 35, Aniago stated that the Anambra youths are ready to make good use of their voting power as the majority. He boasted that his organization has done a good job of ensuring that the youths vote by merit. Therefore, the November 16 elections will be different from what has ever been witnessed in the history of Anambra politics.

He drew attention to the current calmness in the state despite the closeness of the election as proof that the youths are now aware of their strength and therefore cannot be bought over by politicians to engage in hooliganism; rather they are busy scrutinizing the manifestos of the candidates.

Several issues were also discussed, including the character traits of the leading candidates, Dr Chris Ngige and Mr Ifeanyi Ubah who were both present at the Governorship Townhall Conversation broadcast live on Channels Television.

Anambra Governorship Townhall Conversation Held

The much anticipated Anambra Town Hall Conversation has taken place between 2 candidates in the November 16 governorship elections in Anambra State.

How to tackle the security situation in the state became one of the critical issues that were discussed at the event which was organized by Channels Television.

The All Progressives Congress (APC) Candidate, Dr. Chris Ngige took the audience back into memory lane, reminding them of how he successfully utilised unconventional means to tackle the menace, and also made judicious use of security funds.

“I established a vigilante service that comes up from the community level to the Local Government level, to the state level. I trained them in the conventional Police method… We employed those people and you were here in Anambra State, robbery vanished.

For the APC candidate, unemployment provides a ready workforce for crime and criminal activities. His approach to crime prevention is therefore to create jobs, encourage skills acquisition and to overhaul the education system to facilitate skilled workforce.

On his part, the Labour Party candidate, Ifeanyi Uba said that corporate organizations doing business in Anambra State will be asked to contribute in the fight against armed robbery and other crimes.

“I sincerely believe that we need to go into digital solution for Anambra insecurity; there is no need arresting people or paying hoodlums. You cannot continue to pay hoodlums with the state fund, even if it’s from security fund.”

“What the security fund is meant for is to upgrade and transform the security system of Government.”

He promised to engage telecom firms operating in the state to develop an elaborate communication network that would facilitate speedy sharing of information on criminal activities, which would in turn help in preventing crimes like kidnapping.

While Senator Ngige also promised to reintroduce free education at the primary and secondary schools in the state, Mr Ubah insisted that free education is not what Anambra people need. Rather he would identify those who cannot afford to pay their fees and the Government will support them.

Candidates of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Tony Nwoye, the Progressive Peoples Alliance (PPA), Godwin Ezeemo and the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Willie Obiano were absent at the event.


Anambra Governorship Candidate Reel Out Campaign Promises

Chris Ngige and Ifeanyi Uba. Candidates of different political parties in Anambra State vying for the state governorship seat have intensified campaign around the state ahead of the election.

The different political parties’ candidates have made series of promises ranging from free education to the transformation of the Agriculture sector of the state into a viable foreign exchange earner.

At the Saturday campaign in Orumba South Local Government Area, the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Senator Chris Ngige, promised to make the state self-sufficient in food production.

“We will build agricultural extension points in most places in Orumba and we will follow it up with fertiliser that will be free, loan that will be very cheap – interest free. We will give you farming equipment that will be hired free to you,” he promised.

The candidate of the Labour Party, Mr Ifeanyi Ubah, promised supporters in the Idemili-North Local Government Area that he would continue to support the development process in the area.

He described himself as an ‘action man’ that is young and energetic, being a youth.

He promised to bring change to the state if elected as the governor of the state.

Other parties’ candidates also held their campaigns in various towns in the state ahead of the election that the state electoral commission has registered over 20 candidates.

The candidates will hold a televised debate on Sunday, where there will have an opportunity to present their policies to to the indigenes of the state.

Security during the election is expected to be tight, as the police have put in place strategies that will ensure heavy presence of the force around the state.

Over two million people are eligible to vote in the state in the November 16 gubernatorial election.

Anambra Stampede: Ngige Campaign Organisation Speaks

The Ngige Campaign Organisation has described the claims by Governor Peter Obi and the APGA National Chairman, blaming it for the Anambra church stampede as an orchestrated lie.

At a meeting with journalists in Awka, the state capital, on Monday November 4, the organisation dismissed the validity of Governor Obi’s claims and also questioned his credibility in setting up an inquiry into the incident.

The statement by the organisation read, “It is rather most unfortunate that the State Governor and the APGA National Factional Chairman chose to play politics with such a national tragedy in which they were both principal actors.”

“The statement credited to the Anambra State Government that the stampede which killed over 30 persons was caused by the supporters of Dr. Chris Ngige should therefore be disregarded as a tissue of lies that it is, by the good people of Anambra State and Nigerians in general.

“One thing stands out clearly, which can never be dimmed by any desperate campaign; this tragedy could have been avoided if the APGA campaign train did not visit the Adoration Ground at such an ungodly hour to campaign for votes.”

“The Governor should not hold Senator Chris Ngige responsible for his growing unpopularity, and how the people choose to react to him whenever he appears in public.”

The Governor had in his state wide broadcast on Sunday, mentioned the presence of a group of people “located in 3 different spots who started shouting the name of a gubernatorial candidate, Dr Chris Ngige and waving the brooms of All Progressives Congress and pictures of the same candidate” when he was called by the presiding priest to speak to the people.

He also claimed that he left the crusade ground at 3:00am, local time, whereas the incident took place at 5:00am.

APGA Calls For Ngige’s Arrest Over Crusade Stampede

Senator Chris NgigeA political party in Nigeria, the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), has called for the arrest of Senator Chris Ngige, alleging that he masterminded the commotion that led to the death of over 25 persons and dozens injured at the Holy Ghost Adoration Ministry Crusade.

The stampede occurred in Uke, Idemili North Local Government Area of Anambra State on Saturday morning.

The National Chairman of the party, Victor Umeh, called on the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar, to arrest Senator Ngige. He demanded that Ngige should explain what his supporters were doing at the crusade ground with their party symbols of brooms and the governorship candidate’s posters.

He said that “it was a grand plot to cause confusion at the prayer ground.”

Umeh also warned other politicians to desist from politics of confusion.

Senator Ngige is the Senator representing Anambra Central Senatorial District and the All Progressives Congress governorship candidate in the state’s forthcoming gubernatorial election.

The Anambra State government had accused the supporters of Ngige for the unfortunate incident.

Senator Ngige denied the allegations, describing it as an attempt by the state governor and the All Progressives Grand Alliance to tarnish his reputation in the state.

Ngige, accompanied by his wife, was at the hospital where survivors are receiving treatment to commiserate with them.

He called for an unbiased investigation into the cause of the incident.

The gubernatorial election of Anambra State will hold on November 16.