Anambra: Soludo, Ugokwe, 35 Others Submit Nomination Forms


By Emeka Osondu, Awka and Chuks Okocha, Abuja
Ahead of the October 2, 2009 Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship primary in Anambra State, about 37 aspirants on the platform of the party at its National Secretariat in Abuja, yesterday submitted their completed nomination forms.

The submission of the forms was expected to expire at 12 midnight yesterday.

Among those who submitted the forms are former Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) governor Charles Soludo, former member of the House of Representatives Nicholas Ukachukwu, Chuma Nzeribe, Ikechukwu Obiora, Emeka Nwandu, Kenneth Odidika, Kodilichukswu Okelekwe, Alex Obigbolu, Alex Okafor and Damian Okolo.

Others are Udemezue Chukwura, Bernard Okeke, Annie Okonkwo, Jerry Sunny Ugokwe, Tony Nwoye Okechukwu, Ekwenze Solomon, Mike Nkwocha, Chinyere Ogwualili, Mbamalu Emma, Emma Anosike, Chuma Nwofor, Harry Oranezi, Emeka Eze, Amamchukwu Ezeike, E.O. Efobi, Chika Ibeneme and Catherine Egwu.

Also on the list are Uchenna Emordi, Victoria Nwankwo, Ifeoma Love Ebe, Bethran Dim, Lynda Ikpazu, Sam Ikefuna, Chuma Nwofor, Emma Anosike, Carol Nwosu, Ebe ifeoma and Nwankwo Victoria.

About 48 aspirants consisting of 37 men and 11 women picked the forms, but it is not certain at press time how they would beat the deadline.

Each of the men had paid N5 million and another N250,000 as expression of interest fees, while the forms were given free to the female aspirants.

Soludo, whose form was picked by the former Speaker of the House of Representatives in the aborted Third Republic, Chief Agunwa Anakwe, had the form submitted by the same person.

Ukachukwu arrived the PDP National Secretariat along with six members of the state House of Assembly to submit the form.

Ukachukwu, who fielded questions from newsmen after submitting his form, said he is in the race to improve the life of the people of Anambra State by improving the decaying infrastructure in the state and return the state to an envious role model state.

Meanwhile, the National Chairman of the party, Prince Vincent Ogbulafor, has urged members of the various committees set up for the primary not to be intimidated or influenced by the calibre of politicians contesting for the party's governorship position in next year's election in the state.

Speaking at the committees' inauguration in Abuja yesterday, Ogbulafor said: “Anambra has a chequered political history. Its people are known for their hard work, doggedness, achievement and a remarkable unrelenting spirit. All these have combined to make political contests in Anambra State very keen affair.

“There will be attempts to influence or divide you. There may even be attempts to blackmail you. But you must remain steadfast, forthright and resolute.”

He said the PDP had no preferred candidate, adding that they should “remain focused and deliver free and transparent primary. This will show that our efforts to reform the party and deepen internal democracy are yielding results”.

Also, Chairman of the Anambra State Authentication Committee and Delta State Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan described the over 48 aspirants who had collected nomination forms as not serious, as some of them want to use the forms as bargaining chips for appointments as state commissioners and into Boards.

He said: “The contest should not be a do-or-die affair.” The governor also said none of the members of the committee could be bribed, stating, “I don't know any aspirant that can bribe me or any member of the various committees. I don't know of any aspirant that would dare to bring me or use thugs, maybe he may try, but na him sabi.”

In the same vein, 12 more political parties yesterday adopted the state Governor, Mr. Peter Obi, as their candidate for the February 6, 2009 governorship election.

The parties include the Action Alliance (AA), the Nigeria Advance Party (NAP), the Peoples Redemption Party (PRP), the Masses Movement of Nigeria (MMN), the Citizens Popular Party (CPP) and New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP), were organised under the banner of the Legacy Group.

Others were the National Social Democratic Party (NSDP), the Peoples Progressive Party (PPP), the Untied Democratic Party (UDP) and the National Reformation Party (NRP).

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