Governorship aspirants to pay N9m for posters’ pasting in Anambra
Anambra State Government Signage and Advertisement Agency (ANSAA) has said that any governorship aspirant would pay N9 million before he or she could be allowed to paste posters.
Managing Director of ANSAA, Mr. Jude Emecheta, who disclosed this to newsmen in Awka yesterday, warned that any aspirant who contravenes the rule would be prosecuted as the law did not permit indiscriminate pasting of posters. He stated that aspirants must pay before their posters would be permitted to be circulated.
According to him, the agency would need money to clean up the mess generated by such posters after the elections and would not encourage people to de-face the environment with paper and billboards.
He added that a public enlightenment programme on the modalities for putting up election posters would commence from next month to let politicians know that they would not be allowed to paste them on public buildings, electric poles, bridges, road dividers, roundabouts and others.
The ANSAA boss, who said that the agency would designate where to paste election materials, insisted that it was a quasi-criminal offence for any person not to pay government revenue.
“So, don’t say Willie Obiano is pursuing you or APGA is chasing you around. Do the needful to avoid prosecution,” he stated.He said politicians who wished to put up billboards must go through registered advertising agencies domiciled in the state, pledging that no poster or election material of the incumbent governor would be posted without payment.
The Chairman of the Progressives People’s Alliance Party (PPA) in the state, Chief Mathias Ameke, claimed that the directive was to suppress other contenders in the forthcoming polls.
Ameke, who said that such a law would not fly because it was a constitutional matter, said that only the National Assembly could take such a step.He, therefore, called for a fair level playing ground for politics in the state so that the people can make their impressions.
He said: “Fixing such outrageous fees for party candidates’ publicity is a sign of government resentment for popular participation in the coming polls and it is unacceptable and reprehensible too.”
Also, a politician in the state, who did not want to be named, challenged the directive, saying it was a plan to place obstacles on the way of aspirants not in the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA). He warned against taking such a step during the campaigns.
He said: “We will wait and see how this will work in the state. There should be equal opportunity for all. They may be devising plans to stop every challenge to the governor, but they will fail”.
Another aspirant, who spoke on condition of anonymity, described the directive as costly, wondering how much the state would garner as tax or levy at the end of election.
He said that it was obnoxious on the part of the ruling party to make such a policy now, adding that they should not heat up the polity in the state with an unworkable pronouncement.