‘Ikpeazu Is The Next Governor Of Abia’
What is the build-up to the elections like in Abia State today?
Abia as usual is relatively peaceful because the leadership in the state has shown commitment to peace. This, the governor has ensured by restraining himself or any of his aides or appointees from engaging in any act that would undermine peace. That is the mark of leadership and example is better than precept.
What is your take on the reports of recent violence at a town hall meeting between the PDP and APGA?
There was never a face off between the PDP and APGA or any party as the case may be. That was the creation of some elements in APGA who are desirous of creating false impression of a contest between them and the PDP.
The truth is that any day the PDP and APGA members in the state will physically descend to the arena will mark the requiem of APGA. But we will ensure that it will not get to that point so that the peace which the present administration has laboured to build in the state will not be rubbished. The event you mentioned was the latest in the spate of violence being unleashed on the peace-loving people of Abia by one of the factional APGA governorship candidates.
Mr. Kingsley Emereuwa, the Assistant Director Of Media, Abia PDP Campaign Organisation speaks to some journalists on some burning issues in Abia State and others. SAMSON EZEA was there and reports.
Their victims were hapless villagers who were going about their normal business. Take the case of citizen Frank Dickson who was said to be on his way to buy food and was caught in the melee. As we talk now, the young man is still lying at the emergency unit of the Federal Medical Centre Umuahia with his legs shattered. This is as a result of shots he received from armed men being paraded the factional APGA candidate. So there was never a case of PDP engaging APGA in any physical duel. That may be a figment of someone’s imagination.
But the report we got was that it was the PDP that came to disrupt a town hall?
Report from where?
Are you not aware that was the first or initial report?
Now you are talking. That was the very first kite they flew. Only them knew what went amiss and why they incurred the wrath of the people there. The moment they saw that they could no longer contain the anger of the villagers, their spin doctors went to the social media with this version that the PDP came to disrupt their town hall meeting. The common question then is why would PDP want to disrupt the town hall meeting or create mayhem in Ikwuano of all places which is its major catchment area. Remember that is the local government of Col. Austin Akobundu. You will also admit that there was another back-up version of their story that the state government imported hoodlums from Aguleri in Anambra State. However all these collapsed when one of the victims was traced to the hospital and luckily he spoke. That was how they became silent and have been trying to sweep the matter under the carpet.
What then in your view could have led to the fracas?
How will I know? I am not a member of APGA and I don’t dwell in speculations, neither do I possess clairvoyant powers. That is why we held a press briefing calling on the Inspector General of Police to order a full-scale investigation into the matter. But it is common knowledge that what you sow is what you will reap. Alex Otti if the truth must be told is introducing an alien culture of political violence in the state and it is not healthy even for him. Yesterday it was Frank Dickson, who knows who may be next? It could be me or even Otti himself.
Which was why I said earlier that any physical onslaught would bury APGA in Abia. That is why we must uproot this ugly trend before it germinates and gets out of control.
Don’t forget we had earlier raised alarm over the number of soldiers, policemen and armed civilians he had been parading. I am sure many viewed it as mere alarm and perhaps the concerned agencies did not take us serious. Today we have been vindicated.
What are the chances of the PDP flag bearer, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu in the election considering the level of disenchantment that trailed his emergence?
There is nothing to look at as far as the governor ship election in Abia State is concerned. Okezie Ikpeazu is the next governor of Abia State. His victory in the contest is already fait accompli. On the issue of how he picked the ticket, it is on record that Abia PDP had the freest party primaries in December which none of those who lost challenged.
A further demonstration of how transparent the exercise was, is the support he is getting from those who contested with him who have queued behind him. How do you reconcile that with what happened in the other mushroom parties?
Politics has a pattern which makes it run on certain instruments. Such instruments are oiled to sustain base. A man cannot quit his job in July and wants to govern a state he knows little or nothing about in the next few weeks. This is not an estate.
But the governor of Anambra State, Dr. Willie Obiano did just that?
Says who? Somebody opened the space and door for Obiano. A political structure propelled him. But what we have in Abia is a case of a man under hallucination and bondage by some dubious elements who want to milk him dry.
And talking about Anambra you will also agree that Gov. Obiano also represents the Anambra’s version of equity which ensured that all the senatorial zones had shots at the Government House.
Why do you and many others sound so confident about Ikpeazu’s victory in the poll?
It is because we are talking about Abia where I have lived all my life and I know the 184 political wards in the seventeen local government councils. Because we are talking about a state that has just recovered from the stranglehold of a rapacious enclave.
We are talking about a state that has witnessed honesty in service and in governance even when it is not appropriate or politically expedient to say the truth, the governor has never lied to Abia people. Not for one day did he deceive the people.
Here is one governor that owes up to anything that goes wrong under his watch without playing politics with the people of the state and that has given him the courage to be a better leader. Recall during the era of kidnapping, Gov. Orji never passed the blame like Gov. Amaechi was doing. And because he owed up, he was able to surmount that challenge. Today Abia is a model in security. Look at the issue of salary arrears of two months which the opposition hyped was in neighborhood of eight months and thought it could fetch it sympathy, the government admitted owing and promised to clear it which it has done and everybody is on the same page. That is where we draw this confidence you observed. The facelift in the health sector, judiciary, education, hospitality civil service etc are the reasons behind the confidence we exude.
More so, of all the so-called opposition candidates, Ikpeazu is the only one the common man in Abia will see his face and recognise. I want to challenge you to name any serious Abia son or daughter you have seen with Otti? Politics is about people and a game of numbers. He does not have it and will never have it because his ambition was built on false foundation, lies and deceit. And the people are no fools.
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