47 Days To Anambra Election: How APC, APGA, PDP Stand
Forty-seven days to the Anambra State governorship election, billed to hold on November 6, 2021, the major political parties in the state are being weighed down by endless litigations. Daily Trust on Sunday takes a look at how the parties stand in the state.
The three major political parties – the ruling All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and All Progressives Congress (APC) are intractably enmeshed in internal wrangling resulting from their primaries.
This is opening up for some minor political parties to be eyeing the governorship seat in the state.
The primaries conducted by the three major political parties in the state are being described as assault on democratic norms and principles by aggrieved aspirants.
The ruling APGA in the state may have better chances of being returned to the Anambra Government House, giving that the people of the state have come to accept the party as their own and as the only political party owned by Ndigbo. However, the internal squabble that trailed its primaries had forced most of its chieftains to abandon the party.
Recently, six state lawmakers and 12 others on the platform of the party decamped to the APC in protest of what they described as injustice meted out to them. This is becoming a serious concern to the party and those faithful to the party.
The Governorship candidate of the party, Prof. Charles Soludo, is seen by some in the state as too elitist, arrogant and does not have grassroots acceptance to curry votes for the party.
Some political analysts are of the opinion that Governor Obiano wants to plant him as governor to cover up some of his ‘misdeeds’ in the state.
But APGA insists that its outgoing government in the state has done so much to be able to continue in power for the good of the state.
Both the PDP and APC had accused the APGA-led government of mismanaging the economy of the state, saying the government has borrowed so much which has not reflected in the development of the state.
Even among the APGA faithful, there are insinuations that Soludo is too arrogant, and may not remember those who helped him, if elected the governor of the state.
The political permutation in the state is that catholics have been governing the state over years and now, the other denominations have to produce the next governor.
To end the catholic dominance of the political space in the state, most people are rooting for a none catholic to take over the affairs of the state after the incumbent governor.
However, the chances of APGA to emerge victorious in the election are still dicey as nobody can say for sure that the party had done so well to merit a re-election.
The issues of none conduct of local government election in the state is still an issue that other parties are leveraging on to chase the ruling party out of the government house.
Therefore, the party is almost like a movement in the state because of the founder, Dim Chukwuemeka Ojukwu.
The All Progressives Congress (APC) in Anambra State is regarded as an anti-Igbo party or rather a northern party.
But with the recent gale of defections of chieftains of the PDP and APGA, the party is gaining popularity and acceptability in the state.
Six state lawmakers and some chieftains of the APGA had in the last few weeks joined the party to strengthen its force of winning the poll.
Also, some heavy weights of the PDP have joined the party with promises to make sure that APC wins the governorship election.
Given the influx of big names in Anambra politics joining the party, if election is a simple arithmetic, it appears that APC will likely clinch the governorship position in the state.
What is happening in Anambra State is exactly what happened in Nigeria in 2015 when PDP openly said that it would rule the country for 60 years but when the big names in the party left and joined the APC, the party lost.
If the massive defection is what will determine the outcome of the election, APC is good to carry the day, as it continues to reduce the strength of other parties in the state.
Also, there is another thing likely to work in favour of APC, the Catholic-Anglican sentiment, may play out to the advantage of the party.
Catholics have been ruling the state over the years and today, many people may want the Anglican to occupy the topmost position in the state.
This may be an added advantage given that the party candidate Andy Uba is an Anglican.
However, the candidate of APC needs to work extra hard to convince the Anambra voters that he is not being planted by the presidency to establish open grazing in the state.
Whenever one mentions APC, what comes to the mind of the average Anambrarian is that the federal government wants to force Andy Uba on the state.
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is a party that has men and women who are likely to win the governorship election but at every election time, one or two problems will create cracks among members of the party.
Since it lost power in 2003, it has not gone to the polls with one united voice. However, this year, the party is approaching the election with tact and humility to avoid the repeat of previous elections where members worked against the candidate.
The party’s Governorship candidate, Mr. Valentine Ozigbo, appears to be simple, humble and focused but elections are not won by these qualities.
Analysts see him as a new entrant into the Anambra politics with a different concept for new Anambra. The people of Anambra may decide to vote for him as ‘a virgin’ in Anambra politics, who had not soiled his hands.
However, he has been carrying on his campaign with seriousness, even when his candidacy is still being challenged in the court.
If the party is able to reconcile all the court cases hanging on its neck, PDP may bounce back to power in Anambra State.
Similarly, Anambra people may not have forgiven the party for kidnapping a sitting governor and burning the government house, while in power, though most of the actors then had left the party.
Ozigbo, being a new person in the party, may likely unite warring members for the victory of the party.
Meanwhile, some political pundits in the state are of the opinion that electioneering campaigns have not really picked up, due to the litigations and insecurity in the South East.
Speaking on the possible outcome of the governorship poll, Justice Apha Ikpeama, the Bishop-elect of the Bible Family Christian Assembly, said “The election is unpredictable because it is possible that nobody would come out on that day to vote and the government may use the opportunity to appoint a sole administrator in the state. Anambra election is dangling for near anarchy. This is time for our elders to come out and talk to us. Today, nobody speaks for us unlike when Zik was alive. May be the elders will speak to us at the appropriate time on how and where to vote,” he said.