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Intersociety writes APC, PDP & APGA on governorship shift in Anambra, cautions against stampeding APGA primaries

The International Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law, a leading democracy and human rights advocacy organization since 2008, has written to the National Chairman and the Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC), those of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and those of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) as well as Chairmen and Secretaries of their Anambra State Chapters; reminding them of the existing rotation of power or seat of the Governor of Anambra State. The letters were duly received and acknowledged by all the recipients on Tuesday and Wednesday, 4th and 5th of May 2021 and had become importantly necessary in view of the scheduled 6th November 2021 Governorship Election in the State.

Intersociety had in its letters reminded the leaders of the three major political parties of the need to respect the principle of power rotation among the State’s three Senatorial Districts of Anambra North, Anambra Central and Anambra South and ensure that it is judiciously applied in processes leading to the 6th November 2021 Governorship Election.

The leaders of the three major political parties were further informed that Intersociety had carefully studied the rotation of the seat of the Anambra Governor among the State’s three Senatorial Districts since 29th May 1999 when Nigeria returned to civil rule and irrefutably found that Anambra South Senatorial District, beyond arguments, sentiments and excuses, is the Senatorial District to produce the next Governor of the State. It is also the finding of Intersociety that out of total of 23 years of the occupation of the Anambra Governorship Seat since 29th May 1999, Anambra South, in the eyes of the law, has occupied it for only four years against eleven years for Anambra Central and eight years for Anambra North. The political leaders were also reminded that Anambra South District is made up of Ihiala sub zone (Ihiala and Ekwusigo LGAs), Nnewi sub zone (Nnewi North and Nnewi South LGAs) and Old Aguata sub zone (Aguata, Orumba North and Orumba South LGAs).

Going down memory lane, the leaders of the named political parties were statistically given the following breakdown: that with a four year tenure, renewable once, if re-elected; Anambra State was governed for four years (29th May 1999-29th May 2003) by Dr. CC Mbadinuju from Ihiala sub zone of the Anambra South District; governed nearly three years (29th May 2003-17th March 2006) by Dr Chris Ngige (who was later ousted by the Enugu Division of the Court of Appeal on 15th March 2006) from Idemmili sub zone of the Anambra Central District; governed eight years (17th March 2006-17th March 2014) by Mr. Peter Obi from Anaocha sub zone of the same Anambra Central District; and being governed eight years (17thMarch 2014 to end by 17th March 2022) by Mr. Willie Obiano from Omambala sub zone of the Anambra North District; totaling 23 years, out of which Anambra South has taken only four years.
Supporting its strong position, Intersociety further drew the attention of the leaders of the three main political parties to Sections 14 (4) and 42 of the 1999 Constitution as it concerns governorship shift or rotation in Anambra State and reminded them that while Section 42 prohibits all forms of social, economic, cultural and political discrimination and domination, Section 14 (4) provides that: “the composition of a State, a local government council or agencies of such Government shall be done in a manner as to recognize the diversity of the people within the area (i.e. district balancing or rotation) and conduct its affairs in such a manner as to promote a sense of belonging and loyalty among all the peoples of the area and the Federation of Nigeria”.

APGA Must Conduct Credible & Transparent Primaries: We congratulate APGA as a party and Governor Willie Obiano as its leader for building a permanent national secretariat (APGA House) at Katampe Extension in Cadastral Zone B07 in Abuja. We also thank Senator Victor Umeh for his open endorsement of governorship power shift to Anambra South. However, we totally disagree with him over his ‘collective endorsement’ of Prof Charles Soludo. While it is the constitutional right of Senator Umeh to support any aspirant of his choice, we are against ‘the ‘pluralization’ of his endorsement particularly the mentioning of the Governor of the State who is an institution.

As a matter of fact, Intersociety is totally against imposition of any aspirant as a governorship candidate of APGA, or APC, or PDP which was why in our advocacy for power shift in the State, we never canvassed for anointment of any aspirant as a candidate, rather we had in the said letters appealed for collective political understanding among the three Senatorial Districts on the need to respect, concede and support the turn of the Anambra South to produce the next Governor of the State through all inclusive and credible primaries and election proper. Our grand aim of writing the referenced letters, therefore, is to appeal to the key leaders of the three major political parties to appeal and convince their delegates to vote for popular and credible aspirants from Anambra South as Governorship Candidates of their Parties in the forthcoming Election. APGA and its delegates are hereby called upon and prayed to refuse to be stampeded but to vote conscientiously in their forthcoming Governorship primaries and ensure the emergence of the most popular and credible aspirant from Anambra South as APGA’s Governorship Candidate.

Signed:

Emeka Umeagbalasi, Board Chair, Barr Chinwe Umeche, Head of Democracy & Good Governance and Barr Chidimma Udegbunam, Head of Campaign & Publicity
Contacts: Phone/WhatsApp +2348174090052, Email: info@intersociety-ng.org, Website: intersociety-ng.org

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