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Home Anambra 2021 Anambra Governorship debate: Maduka shines, as Etiaba queries Obiano’s ‘white elephant’ projects

Anambra Governorship debate: Maduka shines, as Etiaba queries Obiano’s ‘white elephant’ projects

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…APC, APGA shun debate 

The governorship candidate of the Accord Party, in the forthcoming November 6 election in Anambra state, Dr. Godwin Maduka, has reiterated his earlier stand to build 21 satellite universities across the 21 Council areas of the state in order to bring education closer to all, including okada riders, petty traders, artisans and others in the state when he wins the election.

Maduka whose orderly articulated and presented program (manifesto) at the debate received wild ovation clearly portrayed him as an organized and well prepared candidate.

According to one of the participants, Dr Okey Anidebe, “this stands this man out as a very articulate person. Little wonder he’s known as Mr Evidence whose numerous personal achievements in his community and in parts of the state show he really has/knows what it takes to lead by example.

“If he could on his own and with his personal resources build a multi-storey international medical Centre, research hub, high court, police station, churches, roads, officials quarters for the officers and many others, it shows he’s a leader to trust.

In his presentation during the debate, Dr Maduka said, “All the money we will use to run my government will come from foreign investors. I will ensure Anambra starts production of telephone handsets immediately I take over, stop medical tourism overseas, etc.

“As I speak to you, no single thatch house in my town. I replaced all with brick houses and I will do same to all the poor communities in the state, if given the chance to governed come March 18, 2022”, he added.

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As he reeled out projects after projects that he had executed, others continued shifting in their chairs.

Mr. Valentine Ozigbo, who is the candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) disclosed that his administration would leverage on five clusters; Onitsha, Nkpor, Nnewi, Awka and Omambala to develop Anambra beyond the imagination of all.

Hear him, “I will provide sufficient infrastructure, boost agriculture to let Omambala cluster feel Government presence.” While the narrative about Awka that he described as presently a glorified city in Nigeria under the incumbent Obiano led-APGA government would change.

For the Allied People’s Movement (APM) candidate, Col. Geoffrey Onyejegbu, his main plank was to run a transparent administration, and charged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on credible outcome.

According to the retired soldier, “This state must have respect for peace and order. As a security expert, I am pleading with our young men not to go near violence, and our leaders must discourage violence before, during and after the election.”

Nze Akachukwu Nwankpo, of the African Democratic Congress (ADC) urged electorates not to vote those who had held Anambra’s economy hostage. He said, “Give me your votes. I will run Umunna (inclusive)government. Every umunnna will be part of my government.”

He warned youths not to allow themeselves to be used for violence at the election.

Chief Bennett Etiaba of the Action Alliance (AA) promised to stop the siren harassment by Anambra bigwigs who often come home during festive seasons to intimidate the locals people with their sirens, vehicles and police escorts who chase the poor natives in all direction.

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He saw as a waste and a white elephant project the ongoing construction of international conference centre by governor Willie Obiano, “when the Prof Dora Akunyili Women Development Centre is still an abandoned project. 

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Etiaba noted that building an international conference centre adjacent to Akunyili Centre was unconscionable, waste of resources as it has no direct bearing to the quality of life of Anambra citizens. That having such facilities at that location would increase traffic gridlocks on the Enugu-Onitsha Federal highway, by Government House Awka.

He also promised to provide enabling environment for every business in the state to thrive, and called on the youths to shun anti social conduct and acts of violence during voting.

Incidentally two major candidates -Prof Chukwuma Soludo of the ruling All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) and Senator Andy Uba of the All Progressive Congress (APC), were conspicuously absent at the Manifesto Defense held in Awka at the weekend. 

The program titled “2021 Anambra Governorship Election: Face the Voters”, was organized by Kwechiri Unity Forum in collaboration with Arise Television, and moderated by the former Special Adviser to President Goodluck Jonathan on Media and Publicity, Dr Reuben Abati.

A sizable number of the candidates also stayed away. They included Dr. Obiora Okonkwo of the Zenith Labour Party (ZLP), Senator Ifeanyi Ubah of the Young Progressives Party (YPP); Dr. Obinna Uzor, of Social Democratic Party (SDP); Dr Chidozie Nwankwo, of Action Alliance Congress (AAC); Dr. Obiora Agbasimalo, of Labour Party, Comrade Afam Nwaokafor, National Rescue Movement (NRM), and Chief Nnamdi Nwawuo of the People’s Redemption Party (PRP).

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In his opening remark, the National Coordinator of Kwechiri Unity Forum, Mr. Anselem Onuorah, said that all the 18 political parties contesting the Nov 6 election were invited for the debate, and blamed the ongoing campaigns partially reasons for their absence.

Dr Abati, who grilled the candidates in attendance on leadership, economy, agriculture, health, education, infrastructure, election security, insecurity and the deplorable condition of roads across the state expressed satisfaction with their efforts.

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The candidates as well as participants called on Gov Obiano to declare a state of emergency on the deplorable state of roads in the state. They bemoaned the fate of the governor’s APGA candidate, Prof Soludo whose main access road has been cut off from the rest of the state. They wonder what he would be telling his audience while campaigning, if his governor cannot give him access to his countryhome at Isuofia.

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