Anambra 2021: Politicians others must move from frivolities to electorates, decayed infrastructures
Church leaders must avoid extorting candidates and electorates refraining from getting scared and bribed at polling boots
Candidates, others must move from politics of cow, moon and star to the electorates & decayed infrastructures sites
The Int’l Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law, InterSociety, an internationally recognized and reputable as well as Nigeria’s leading democracy and human rights investigative organization is strongly calling on all Governorship candidates, joined by serving legislators, Government appointees, their predecessors and other political actors in Anambra State to, as a matter of urgency and extreme public importance move away from politics of cow, moon and star and focus their attention on Anambra electorates and the State’s badly decayed public infrastructures.
Political platforms or gladiators representing or promoting the three darkened symbols and hoping to install the next Government of Anambra State on such disastrous foundation must be stopped by democratic forces by any legitimate means necessary. They must be told in clear terms that “Anambra State is not Imo State and will never be”!
Intersociety, joined by others including the Anambra State Branch and the Southeast Zone of the Civil Liberties Organization, CLO has carefully followed the latest patterns, twists and turns in the State’s 2021 Governorship electoral process; a clear departure from what it used to be since 2006 when the congregated and aggregated democratic forces successfully wrestled democratic power from the grip of criminal politicians and taken same back to Anambra People.
Contrarily, the ongoing political twists and turns in the State have led to emergence of contenders, pretenders, scavengers and opportunist under-dogs. Contenders are those wishing to become the next Anambra Governor through popular and credible votes. Scavengers are those jostling to be Governor by being “caliphated and crowned at source”. The opportunist under-dogs are those that heavily rely on caliphate court verdicts even if they have been announced by INEC as having taken ninth position at poll.
In other words, the twists and turns playing out in Anambra State are indisputably traced to Imo State and gubernatorial emergence of Hope Uzodimma, leading to installation of the present chaotic Government in the State in January 2020 through, some say, a caliphate Supreme Court judgment. Since then, the Imo Government and its governance have become so chaotic that over 200 citizens-most of them innocent and defenseless have been wasted in past eight months of 2021 in the hands of the deployed enemy security forces.
The general development of the State is also steadily undermined and abuse and bastardization of citizens’ rights to freedom of expression, association and privacy; and conscience, worship and belief have risen to an apogee. Remembered too is the ‘mammonic’ and desecrated role of the Catholic Church in the despicable episode through the Church’s Holy Ghost Adoration Ministry, Enugu, christened: “I See Hope”.
Today, the Imo despicable episode is nearly taking a center stage in Anambra State to the extent that political actors have almost abandoned decency and decorum and resorted to political brigandage including rascal judicial processes occasioned by the twists and turns arising from fielding of the political parties’ governorship candidates.
It is also a truism that the modern day Nigerian politicians are like ‘soldier ants led by a blind or effeminate leader that usually leads them to a native kitchen fire-burn-a route they all follow and perish without any of them pausing or having a second thought to discontinue or disembark’.
Elected public office holders particularly State and Federal legislators across the country including Anambra State have recklessly engaged in a harvest of defection from one party to the other overlooking the consequences of their action or without asking and answering the pertinent questions as to: who elected them? When, where and why were they elected? And who were they elected to represent: themselves or their constituents?
It is therefore our strong call on all Governorship candidates in Anambra State to face the realities on the ground and stop chasing shadows because the Nov 6 Governorship Election in the State is not going to be allowed to be manipulated by federal might as attempts to do such had failed woefully in places like Edo, Benue and Rivers and will fail woefully this time if attempted in Anambra State.
That is to say that a governorship candidate, irrespective of his political party can popularly and credibly win election in the State without signing a caliphate agreement or hoping on federal might to rig him or her in.
Elections can popularly and credibly be won not by use of federal might or sharing stolen public funds or ill-gotten money but by being able to convince the electorates with grounded statistics on governance decay in the State, like the near total collapse of the State’s road network, environmental and social services as well as the menace of roadside revenue touts recruited by Government appointees.
It is a truism that the outgoing Government of Anambra State governed the State as “a damager government” and ended up setting the State monumentally backward and reversing all the development foundations put in place between 2006 and 2014-thereby making it almost impossible for the outgoing Governor to proudly, credibly and popularly stand tall in campaigning for the candidate of the State ruling party.
This is more so when it is in the public knowledge that the Governor is preoccupied with his exit strategy and soft landing push, especially owing to his very poor performance in office and loyalty shift by his political lieutenants and appointees.
Totality of these requires the candidate of the State ruling Party to detach himself and find his way to the electorates and the sites of the decayed public infrastructures to see things for himself and convince the electorates on how to turn them around if elected.
As for the churches in the State especially Catholics, Anglicans and Pentecostals and their dry worship of Mammon in place of defense of faith, they are told in clear terms that the Nov 6 Governorship Election in Anambra State will make or mar the Christian faith including its survival and growth as well as Anambra’s Igbo man’s rights of existence, development, ethnic and religious identity and conscience.
The attitudes of these church or Christian leaders towards the Nov 6 Poll are of extreme essence and faith importance. This is because research has severally found Christian leaders in recent times especially as it relates to electoral process, democracy and good governance to be a critical partaker in electoral manipulations and brigandage as well as bad governance and corruption in public offices.
These Christian leaders partake in or encouraged by massively extorting politicians especially candidates during campaigns using the name of God.
While in office, same Christian leaders will also not let politicians or elected public office holders be and will be more interested in their private pockets than allocation of public funds to critical public infrastructures and delivery of social services.
In the outgoing Government of Anambra State, for instance, prominent Christian leaders cutting across Catholic, Anglican and Pentecostal churches stooped so low to the extent of being compensated with or anointing a motley of SAs and SSAs.
This is in addition to receiving ‘privately pocketed monthly gratifications’ worth millions of naira each; yet at pulpits, the same Christian leaders will turn around and accuse same elected public office holders of “poor performance and wasteful spending”. This is not to talk of those running Adoration Ministries or Special Crusades. Space and time will not permit to reel out instances of the latter’s “un-Christ-like” pulpit conducts.
Finally, another golden opportunity has therefore come the way of the Anambra electorates to strongly rise and refuse to be brainwashed or bought over with few thousands of naira notes at poll. Also what is called “no election in Anambra State” is now indirectly and in practice the brain-child of the outgoing Government of Anambra State which used same malevolently advantageously back in 2017 when it was deployed to scare away hundreds of thousands of independent voters.
This was aided by “heightened security tensions” by drafted security agencies. Today, it may interest all to know that the same “no election in Anambra” is rearing its ugly head at indirect instance of the same Government of Anambra State; all geared towards scaring teeming independent voters away and having a field day.
Our strong position on Nov 6 Anambra Governorship Election, therefore, is that the turn of the Anambra South to produce the next Gov is sacrosanct and non-negotiable and Anambra voters must freely be allowed to vote candidate of their choice without molestation or intimidation and their ‘living votes’ must count, be protected and declared as cast or voted.
For: International Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law
Principal Officers: Emeka Umeagbalasi, Chinwe Umeche Esq., Chidimma Udegbunam, Esq.