By Vincent Ujumadu
LIKE in the previous elections, the Uba brothers, Chief Chris Uba, popularly called the godfather of Anambra politics and his elder brother, Senator Andy Uba, currently representing Anambra South senatorial zone, are at war again.
Since leaving office as a member of the kitchen cabinet during the tenure of former President Olusegun Obasanjo, Senator Uba has been contesting for political office, either for governor or for senate and his younger brother, Chris, had always opposed him. However, the Senator always succeeded without the support of his brother, Chris who usually opposed him from the sideline.
This time around, Chris has gone further in the consistent opposition against his brother by picking the ticket of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, for Anambra South, while the incumbent senator has emerged as the candidate of All Progress Congress, APC, though in a controversial manner, as his ticket is still being contested by some APC aspirants in the zone.
If Andy wins the election next year, it would be his third tenure in the Senate. But Chris Uba said in an interview in Awka that he was contesting against his elder brother, Andy because he did want not him (Andy) to overstay his usefulness in the Red Chamber.
According to him, Andy should progress politically, instead of stagnating at a place as a senator where he is not even making any impact.
He said: “My brother has been in the Senate for eight years and he must take a bow this time. I pray for my brother to go higher and he can become a governor or vice president, but he will not be a senator again. It is now my turn and I want him to throw in the towel because the battle between us is going to be very serious.”
Chris, who admitted that he had played the role of political godfather for nearly two decades in Anambra and beyond, said he decided to be a contestant in the present dispensation to ‘correct some anomalies in the system’, expressing dissatisfaction at the way politicians treat the masses after elections.
Uba, also known as Eselu, further said: “Power must belong to the people and not to a few privileged politicians. Why I want to run is because we have been sponsoring politicians in Anambra State and across Nigeria and a lot of people have passed through my school.
“They call us godfathers and we have made case severally for our party to make some provisions in the party’s constitution to protect godfathers, without success;
“The truth remains that godfathers are closer to the grassroots, a lot of people depend on us; a lot of families depend on us and unfortunately, many families today are hungry.
“After sponsoring politicians, we can’t get them on telephone again once they get to Abuja and seeing them becomes very difficult.
“The next thing they do is to start blackmailing and fighting you and telling you they now know the President and the party chairman. And as a godfather, you are in trouble. So we need to occupy offices to protect our positions. That is why I am running for the senate.”