Ozigbo congratulates Soludo, says election fraught with vote buying, poorly trained ad-hoc staff, security, others 

Posted by News Express | 10 November 2021 | 685 times

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•Anambra guber candidates, Valentine Ozigbo (PDP) and Charles Soludo (APGA)

 

 

By PAMELA EBOH, Awka 

Governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Valentine Ozigbo has congratulated his opponent, Prof Charles Soludo of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) for emerging the winner of the Anambra governorship election held on Saturday.

Ozigbo, who was the first runner-up in the election, said his decided to go into active partisan politics two years ago was with a number of objectives, which include, using Anambra to set an example of excellence in governance, unifying Anambra and Ala Igbo around a shared vision of greatness and inspiring more professionals to go into politics. 

He said the attainment of the three objectives would go a long way in changing the story of black men and women in the world for the better. 

The PDP candidate in a statement issued on Wednesday said: “Pulled by the vision of a better and brighter Anambra, we set out on the quest for governorship, resolute on taking revolutionary steps to address the decay and decline in security, infrastructure, education, healthcare, the environment, and all other social systems meant to serve the people. 

“As laid out in our Ka Anambra Chawapu Manifesto, we planned to transform Anambra into the most competitive sub-national economy in Nigeria by opening up public, social, and commercial spaces leveraging on the strength of our youth and women. Ultimately, to make Anambra the pride of Nigeria. 

“Given where we started and where we are today, we consider ourselves winners. Our Ka Anambra Chawapu message has permeated the consciousness of Ndi Anambra, and the nation at large. It is the strongest message that has come out of Anambra 2021, and it continues to beat in the hearts of Ndi Igbo.

“I have just called Professor Chukwuma Soludo and congratulated him on being declared the winner of the Anambra State governorship elections, 2021. I wished him well and prayed for his success.”

Ozigbo however maintained the election was fraught with a lot of short-comings on the part of various government institutions. 

According to him, the security agencies failed to provide a peaceful environment for campaigns to hold, adding that on election day, they were absent from many polling centres leading to elections not holding or held in situations that allowed for chaos and fraud.

He accused the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) of presenting untrained and poorly trained member of staff who could not operate the voting machines in many places. 

He said: “They failed woefully in providing logistical support for their staff and so elections started very late in many places and did not hold in many others. 

“The use of government funds and resources to corrupt, coerce, and intimidate voters, PDP party agents, and electoral officials was a major factor in determining the outcome of this election. 

“All of these led to the disenfranchisement of the greater percentage of voters and staining the course of democracy. I will be dedicating time to champion the positive change we need to ensure that future elections are truly free and fair and that the will of the electorate prevails.

“Denominational politics was also a factor. We need to do a lot more to ensure that competence is never sacrificed on this altar, and that democracy is practiced in line with its truest tenets. 

“In all, I am more determined to working for a better future for our children by remaining in active politics and rebuilding our party to be more united and more robust for those who come after us. Ka Anambra Chawapu.”

On the issue of unifying Igbo zone, Ozigbo said that every Igbo person now understands that they have a voice in him, because he will forever speak in the interest of the Igbo Nation and the rest of the marginalised and forgotten in Nigeria. 

The PDP candidate hailed all the men and women who contested the election saying that they have all have shown a determination to see that Anambra is better, saying: “It was an honour to run this race with you. 

“I acknowledge that we could not have done this alone. I am a child of Grace. I thank the Almighty God who chose me for this mission for His abundant mercies and love. 

“I thank all the courageous men and women who first believed in me, many of them without knowing me well. You are the heroes of our Ka Anambra Chawapu Movement. I also thank everyone who believed, even without meeting me, who heard our message and came out in full support.

“I am grateful to every single person who joined our movement and contributed in one way or the other. The thousands who showed us so much love, from youths and women in the grassroots, to those in the diaspora, to the Non Indigenes, various church groups across all denominations, market women, civil servants, artisans, and many more. Thank you for your prayers, your material, financial, and intellectual contributions. May the Lord reward you abundantly.”

While thanking the leaders and pillars of PDP, especially the PDP Governors, state and ward levels who stood by his team to win the mandate, Ozigbo also thanked the entire Anambra people home and abroad for the openness, love, and enthusiasm with which the team was received during campaigns.


Source: News Express

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