Those Claiming Anambra Election Won’t Hold Are Lying, Says Ezeife

Former Anambra State Governor, Dr Chukwuemeka Ezeife, speaks during an interview which aired on Channels Television’s Newsnight on October 25, 2021.

 

Former Anambra State Governor, Dr Chukwuemeka Ezeife, has said that those claiming the governorship election in Anambra won’t hold are lying.

There has been palpable fear in the south-east region following the deteriorating state of insecurity with many scared that the November 6 governorship election in Anambra State will not hold.

But Ezeife who spoke during an interview on Channels Television’s Newsnight faulted those working against the scheduled poll in the state, saying their intention is to mislead the people.

He equally alleged that some people within the system were colluding with outsiders to unleash mayhem in the South-East.

“The issue of those people saying there will be no election in Anambra State is a lie intended to mislead (the people),” he said.

The ex-governor noted that the phrase ‘unknown gunmen’ started after the April 5 attack on the Nigerian Correctional Services and the Police Headquarters in Imo State, where gunmen freed several prison inmates.

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Following the attack that left at least a policeman dead, Ezeife recalled how the Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma said more than 70 per cent of the attackers were not easterners.

Speaking further, he regretted that five months after the attack, the gunmen again struck in Anambra by killing Chike Akunyili, husband of the late boss of the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Dora Akunyili.

He added, “Remember when the incident in Owerri Prison happened when the unknown gunmen started, those people who were the unknown gunmen, Governor Hope Uzodinma said more than 70 per cent of them were not from the east,” he said.

“That happened months before Nnamdi Kanu came back, now the Akunyuli case. My own people saw it happen.

“My PA, driver and the other people who saw this thing happen never saw any group of people claiming responsibility or saying there will be no election. I cannot clearly say that nobody from IPOB is responsible. There are bad people everywhere, there may have been people especially at the beginning who acted violently and those people may be from Anambra.”

Traditional Rulers Join Anambra State’s Economic Diversification Drive

Traditional Rulers on Anambra's economy
Obi of Onitsha, HRM Alfred Achebe

The Anambra State Council of Traditional Rulers say they are determined to contribute their quota in efforts to break the bounds of mono-economy and shift focus to a broadly creative, self-generating and diversified economy in the state.

The monarchs are optimistic that the step taken by the Council would enable them meet the varied needs of their various communities and that of the entire state population.

It was a decision made at their fifth annual seminar held at their Secretariat Complex within the Government House in Awka, the Anambra State capital in southeast Nigeria.

The theme of the discourse was “Diversification of the Nigerian Economy; a Sine Qua Non for Sustainable Socio-Economic Stability and Growth”.

Mechanised And Commercial Agriculture

Addressing the assembly, Governor Willie Obiano, represented by his deputy, Nkem Okeke, proposed industrialisation and agriculture, as the solution to the challenges of depreciating currency, dwindling national Gross Domestic Product and the sharp rise in the suffering of Nigerians.

Mr Okeke, who commended the organisers for their choice of the theme, highlighted the efforts of the government in agriculture.

He reiterated the commitment of the government to pursuing mechanised and commercial agriculture, saying that huge investment has been made in establishing industrial farms in over five communities in the state.

In their various remarks, the former Governor of Anambra State, Dr. Chukwuemeka Ezeife; as well as the Chairman of the Council and Obi of Onitsha, Alfred Achebe, urged the people of the state to develop interest in agriculture and investment.

The Obi of Onitsha further called for conscious effort to be made by all traditional rulers of the 179 communities, to ensure that their subjects key into the vision of the state government in the area of agriculture and industrialisation.

National Conference: Anambra Delegates Discuss Priority Areas

Willie Obiano1Anambra State’s delegates to the National Conference say issues pertaining to what constitutes Federating Units and the system of government that Nigeria should practice are issues of paramount interest that they are taking to the National Conference that would re-convene on Monday.

After a meeting with the Anambra State Governor, Willie Obiano, at his country home in Aguleri, Anambra East Local Government Area, the leader of the delegation and former National Chairman of Ohaneze, Dr Dozie Ikedife, said that other matters concerning Anambra State and the Southeast would also be presented.

The delegates, drawn from the three senatorial zones of the state to represent Anambra State in the National Conference holding in Abuja, came to brainstorm with the State Governor on what matters to take to the conference.

Commending the composition of the delegates, the Governor expressed confidence that the delegates were equal to the task, counting on their experience and capabilities.

The media witnessed the preliminary exchange of pleasantries and discourse where a former Governor of Anambra State, Dr Chukwuemeka Ezeife, briefed the gathering on the developments surrounding the idea to have a National Conference and said that it was ideal to brainstorm before heading for the meeting as a group, in order to speak with one voice.

Addressing the press after a closed door meeting, the leader of the delegation said that the issues they would take to the conference were considered as priorities.

Aside the national matters which affect everybody, Dr Ikedife said: “Issues that are pertinent to Anambra and the East Central states will also be discussed”.

Some of the other delegates to the National Conference include former Minister of Health, Professor ABC Nwosu; former Minister of Women Affairs, Josephine Anenih and the first female governor in Nigeria, Dame Virgy Etiaba amongst others. 

Anambra: Groups Reject Call For Poll Cancellation

Several individuals from the traditional institution in Anambra state as well as, political parties, youth organisations and some governorship candidates have rejected the call for the cancellation of the governorship election which was tagged ‘inconclusive’ by INEC.

Although the electoral umpire has said it would conduct a supplementary election in a bid to cover up lapses encountered in the first election, some groups as well as the PDP have called for the outright cancelation of the election.

They cited cases of financial inducement during the election and the non-conduct of the election in some wards in Idemili North as well as the issues of voters not finding their names in the register and as such were unable to cast their votes.

A former governor of Anambra state, Dr. Chukwuemeka Ezeife, who monitored the election highlighted both the good and the ugly side of the election and maintained that it would be senseless to cancel it.

From the traditional institution, the traditional rulers of Nteje (Rowland Odigbo) and Awka (Gibson Nwosu) stressed that the election was peaceful and saw no reason for the call for cancellation.

They said that those insisting on cancellation should seek redress in the appropriate quarters without disturbing the peace of the state.

Representatives of the Ohaneze and the Association of Town Union, Innocent Onwubuya, Chris Eluemuno and Chinelo Okechukwu condemned the idea in its entirety.

Members of the Coalition of accredited civil society group and state chapter of the National Youth Council of Nigeria, NYCN, said that there won’t be total cancellation of the election.

Chairman, International Society for Civil Liberties and the Rule of Law, a civil society group led by Mr Emeka Umeagbalasi expressed surprise at the sudden lack of boldness by INEC under the law to conduct the election.

He reminded INEC that it has no power to cancel the elections as only the Tribunal has such powers. He also warned that Anambra people will never participate in any fresh poll.