Citizens of Anambra state yesterday turned down directives from their executives and state government directing them to close shops and markets so as to attend or honour political campaign rallies of the ruling All Progressives Grand Alliance APGA Nov 16 governorship candidate, Dr Willie Obianor?
This was coming on the heels of a public outcry over the reported allegation by faceless persons that the governorship candidate has entered into a spurious agreement with some named big wigs of the party including the national chairman, Chief Victor Umeh.
However a call to Chief Umeh revealed that the so-called document, as spurious, unfounded and outlandish as it sounds could be taxed to the below-the-belt tactics of some political opponents who are intimidated by both the imposing credentials of Obianor and Gov Peter Obi’s superlative performance in the state.
The traders under the aegis of Anambra Traders Forum for Good Governance, said the directive had expected them to abandon their legitimate trade against their will, “and form part of the usual rented crowd of an unpopular candidate of a fragmented party, driven by clannish god fathers.”
According to the group’s spokesman, Mazi Paul Ejinkonye, “the decision of the traders in Main market Onitsha to effect this resistance is a golden rediscovery of the right of every Anambra indigene or resident to lawfully engage in their daily means of livelihood with molestation and to give up that right only on self-volition.
“Clearly the APGA rump, which cannot now survive on their own without leaning on some elements of the PDP framework- as attested to by the reported contest with PDP candidates for Aso Rock support- has not pretended to be democratic and it is little wonder they are unpopular in a state oriented toward egalitarianism.
The traders had blamed the state government which structures have been deliberately confused with that of its controlling party to erase its own obnoxious policy through it own actions. The State government, they added had without recourse to any law, claimed to have banned any political campaign in the markets of Anambra State. Then the leading lights of government now went round to campaign in markets.
In his reaction over the statnce of the traders, the state publicity secretary of the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria, Mr Madukaife Okelo, “In the last few weeks, they had campaigned in Ngbuka Obosi, Building Materials Market Ogidi, and by yesterday three markets in Onitsha were they were rejected, among others. The constitution and before the charter of equity in the minds of all good people of Anambra State is that all parties are now free to campaign in the, markets.
“That implication is not lost on the All Progressive Congress (APC),and we shall in due course announce publicly how we want to key into this to re-affirm the popularity which Anambra peoples wilfully conferred on our party and our candidate in the November 16, 2013 gubernatorial elections, without the compulsion and blackmail with which the APGA junta furthers its interest.”
He was even harsher with his reaction on the reported spurious agreement, saying that if it turns out true, then it clearly shows the kind of administration they planned to impose and foist on the state. He urged the people to denounce it and reject such persons.