By Francis Igata, Enugu
The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP,Enugu State chapter which had been buffeted from all cylinders prior to the December 8, primaries of the party,coagulated quickly following the emergence of a popular candidate.Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi’s emergence on December 8, and the subsequent governorship campaign flag-off his governorship campaign on January 19, has galvanised party faithful under the PDP umbrella even as the party is believed to have sufficiently shown its capability to outdo other opposition parties in the forthcoming general elections.
In a bid to show their gratitude to Governor Sullivan Chime over Ugwuanyi’s choice and for his stance to enthrone a successor of Enugu-North senatorial zone extraction, the council chairman of Nsukka Local Government Area,Mr. Charles Ugwu, named the Nsukka Township Stadium after Chime. This happened when the Ugwuanyi campaign train visited the area. The reception was, again, another sign of the Ugwuanyi’s popularity in Enugu state.
Mr. Ugwu said that the stadium would now be called “Sullivan Chime Square.” He said the development, which was greeted with loud cheers from the crowd, was a show of gratitude to Chime by the people of Nsukka zone. He said apart from ensuring that the governorship position was zoned to Nsukka, Chime equally endeared himself to the people of the area through his developmental strides and support for the creation of Adada State.
Reacting to the honour, Governor Chime described it as “a pleasant surprise”. While thanking the people of Nsukka for their support to his administration and for the PDP, he urged them to replicate same for the incoming administration. In a speech at the rally, the PDP guber candidate in the State, Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi said the renaming of the Stadium after Governor Chime was just one of the many things lined up by the people of the area in order to thank Chime for his kind gestures.
He said it took a courageous, kind and honest leader like Chime to make sure that the governorship position was zoned to Enugu North, adding that “it is not because we have money”. “I want to state here that in and out of office, Sullivan Chime remains my leader. I used to hear that people are ‘Ekwueme’, (one who lives by his words), but I actually saw it in Governor Chime.
“Sullivan was not Governor for Udi; he was Governor for the entire Enugu state; look at the state of 9th Mile Express road; compare it with the new Opi-Ugwuogo-Enugu road he did for Nsukka people; so, we shall do for Udi people what he could not do for them. “We are asking God to give us opportunity so that we can tell him thank you. You know that this stadium means so much to Nsukka people; we shall give it a befitting look; we shall honour this great man”, he added.
However, the massive turn-out of women at the rally was visibly traced to the hope which the incoming administration portends. Ugwuanyi’s running mate, Mrs. Cecilia Ezeilo, widow of late Igwe of Ezeagu, Chief Malachy Ezeilo, who represents Ezeagu consistency at the Enugu State House of Assembly had signpost the emancipation of women from the shackles of ‘kitchen life’ to that of economic empowerment.