ANAMBRA 2021: The bigwigs to watch

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As the race for Government House, Awka, Anambra State, in 2021, gather momentum, it is necessary to take a cursory look at the front runners. Since the dispensation of Chris Ngige, to date,

Anambra State has set the pace for governorship in Igboland. Meanwhile, the field is already saturated, as serious contenders are already taking positions in their quest to occupy Agu Awka in 2021.

PROFESSOR CHUKWUMA SOLUDO

This former Central Bank of Nigeria governor is the APGA choice. APGA has run the state throughout this democratic dispensation. Yet on October 9, 2009, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, chose Soludo as their consensus candidate in a field of about 47 candidates.

His bid, however, failed following an inconclusive primary that ended up with court injunctions. The experience of Prof. Soludo garnered over the years is yet to be exploited on the home front in Anambra. Depending on which side you are in Anambra politics, the Soludo baggage could be a factor as the race for 2021 rolls over in Anambra.

IKE OLIGBO

Since he made public his intention to move into Agu Awka in 202, this international security expert has not ceased to amaze the grassroots in Anambra. While other contenders were still weighing their options, Oligbo put his resources on the ground, building party offices in local governments and ensuring that his party, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, had a head start in the quest for the Government House in Awka.

As if that was not enough, this neophyte in Anambra politics, put his hat in the ring early enough. His commitment and love for the people were exemplified during the upsurge of coronavirus in the country. He was in the forefront to provide palliatives to cushion the effects of COVID-19 on the people.

Using his well-funded Hon. Amb. Ike Oligbo Foundation, he created awareness and sensitised the people on the pandemic, beginning from Eke Awka on April 1, 2020, providing COVID-19 preventive kits which included face masks, sanitizers and hand gloves.
His bid, however, failed following an inconclusive primary that ended up with court injunctions. The experience of Prof. Soludo garnered over the years is yet to be exploited on the home front in Anambra. Depending on which side you are in Anambra politics, the Soludo baggage could be a factor as the race for 2021 rolls over in Anambra.

IKE OLIGBO

Since he made public his intention to move into Agu Awka in 202, this international security expert has not ceased to amaze the grassroots in Anambra. While other contenders were still weighing their options, Oligbo put his resources on the ground, building party offices in local governments and ensuring that his party, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, had a head start in the quest for the Government House in Awka.

As if that was not enough, this neophyte in Anambra politics, put his hat in the ring early enough. His commitment and love for the people were exemplified during the upsurge of coronavirus in the country. He was in the forefront to provide palliatives to cushion the effects of COVID-19 on the people.

Using his well-funded Hon. Amb. Ike Oligbo Foundation, he created awareness and sensitised the people on the pandemic, beginning from Eke Awka on April 1, 2020, providing COVID-19 preventive kits which included face masks, sanitizers and hand gloves.

Again, the medical team of his Foundation were present in 21 local governments in Anambra State. As a new man in the politics of the state, Ike Oligbo carries no baggage in this quest and if opinions in the state is anything to go by, he remains among the most trusted politicians in Anambra State.

UCHE EKWUNIFE

An experienced politician and a veteran in governorship contests in Anambra State. In 2007, Iyom, contested under PDP for Njikoka/Anaocha/Dunukofia Federal Constituency and won. Again, in 2010, she contested for the governorship position of the state on the platform of Progressive Peoples Alliance (PPA), while still a member of the House of Representatives.

She was the first woman to kick-off COVID-19 awareness campaign in the state, providing preventive kits, and later other palliatives. Meanwhile, the gender issue and the zoning issue in PDP could be an issue in her way to Government House, Awka.

IFEANYI UBA

Currently, a senator of the Federal Republic, Uba can safely be described as a veteran of governorship contests in Anambra State. He contested under Labour Party in 2013 and failed. He tried under PDP in 2017, unsuccessfully, before decamping to APGA. He was however successful following his contest for the Senate on the platform of YPP.

He has since indicated interest for the governorship contest for 2021. He lacks political flair but has proven to be no pushover, as he defeated some known political giants on his way to the Senate. Ifeanyi Uba has so much baggage as he leads his content for Agu Awka in 2021.

GODWIN MADUKA

Maduka is a well-known name in the politics of Anambra State. A philanthropist, he has proven that he can hold his own. He joined PDP from APGA in 2019. His movement to PDP was celebrated as he went along with many of his supporters.

While being new in political statecraft, Maduka has no known baggage. He was outstanding during the early lockdown in Anambra State, providing palliatives like rice, face masks, sanitizers, etc. to all the 181 communities and 326 wards in Anambra State.

TONY NWOYE

A politician who has been in the scene for a long time. Nwoye has lots of political baggage. He has contested for governorship twice under the platform of PDP (2013) and APC (2019), respectively, and failed in both attempts. He is currently a member of APC but he has an arduous task to replace Governor Willie Obiano, with both coming from Anambra North.

As we look to the future of Anambra politics, it will be interesting as politicking on who succeeds |Obiano at Government House, Awka, moves to a feverish pitch.

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