Frontline contender and candidate of the pan-Igbo United Progressive Party (UPP) for the November 18, 2017 Anambra governorship election, Chief Osita Chidoka, has vowed to restore the Igbo voice in Nigerian politics.
Chidoka who spoke while receiving the UPP primary certificate of return from the National Chairman, Chief Chekwas Okorie, at the party’s national secretariat in Abuja on Wednesday, said his emergence as the candidate of the party signals a new beginning for the people and the resistance against the 5% relegation of the people of the southeast.
Chief Chidoka who received the flag of his party for the poll also vowed to pursue the party’s ideology of self-determination.
The former aviation minister said his candidature marks the end of an ideologically vacuous and imprudent government that holds no hope for the people while kick-starting a new era where the people can now vote for a governor of their choice and not for persons sponsored by godfathers.
According to Chidoka, “today, Anambra state is about to start a new beginning in the pursuit of our ideology as a people; the ideology of the UPP, which is the ideology of hardwork, creativity and the fear of God; the ideology of the restoration of our homeland and the rebuilding of our capacity as a people.”
Chief Chidoka also vowed to pursue “the ideology of self determination and right to determine our role in Nigeria, where no man is oppressed.”
He said, “Indeed, it is the pursuit of the ideology of re-enacting our people’s hopes and aspirations, the desire to be recognised as a free constituent of the country and where they are not relegated to being a mere 5 percent in Nigeria.
“Let it be known that the UPP has come to restore the Igbo voice. No more would Anambra state be ruled by an ideologically vacuous and bankrupt party. In 2003, Chief Chekwas Okorie founded the All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) on the idea that all the grievances of ndi-Igbo would be channeled through a political party to engage the other parts of the country. Unfortunately that dream was betrayed. APGA became an electoral vehicle meant for the election of people whose desires and interests are the maximization of their personal capacity and not the welfare of the people.
“That is why today, neither APGA as a party, nor the government of Anambra state, has any position on the agitation for the actualization of Biafra by ndi Igbo. They have no position on the issue of restructuring. They have worked with PDP and they are willing to work with APC. APGA as a party is adrift and we want to send it to its final funeral, and on this mission we have the full backing of the Anambra people.
“Our greatest resource is human beings and I will continue to stand by them. The banner I receive today is the banner that will do away with all that is wrong with us and promote all that is right. It is a banner that will question the history that makes us a people who though renowned globally as hard working people, are here in Nigeria, struggling to exert ourselves in our various endeavors”, he said.
Chidoka, who revealed that his campaign and the vision of the UPP have since penetrated the nooks and crannies of the state with strong bonding with the people, said his candidature has for the first time presented Anambra voters with the opportunity of electing a governor of their choice as against the situation in the past where they are left with no option than to choose among stooges of political godfathers.
“No more shall Anambra state people be voting for persons who are sponsored by godfathers of people that are not contesting in the election, but whose major intent is to fleece the state and line their pockets and those of their party members and deprive the people”, Chidoka stated.
Speaking while handing Chidoka the certificate of return and INEC nomination form, UPP National Chairman, Chief Chekwa Okorie said the UPP is the only party that has the full backing of the ordinary people adding that its victory at the poll has become inevitable.
He urged INEC to ensure a credible poll using its automated system to directly transmit results from the polling units to its central server to ensure that nothing but the will of the people as directly expressed at the polls, prevails.