By Francis Ekpone
There is tension in Onitsha South 11 constituency following the omission of the name of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) candidate, Beverly Nkemdiche Ikpeazu on the final list of the Anambra State House of Assembly candidates released last Thursday, by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
Orient Daily learnt that six APGA aspirants to the State House of Assembly ticket, Nduka Alor, Larry Edemanya, Emeka Akanegbu, Achebe Egbuna and two others dragged Ikpeazu to court on the ground that no primary election was held in the constituency but that a certificate of return was issued to her by the leadership of APGA that supervised the election.
The development, this paper learnt, made many of the aspirants to dump APGA for other political parties. These included Nduka Alor who is now flying the flag of YPP in the constituency.
INEC National Commissioner, Mr. Festus Okoye, said in Awka, during a sensitisation forum for the media on the 2019 elections, that the commission dropped candidates in Zamfara, Ogun, Rivers, Anambra and other states due to court order or lack of valid party primaries as enshrined in the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended.
Reacting on the development, one of the aggrieved aspirants and candidate of YPP in the constituency, Nduka Alor, commended INEC and judiciary for the bold step of working within the ambits of the law, saying that the he who wants equity must go with clean hands.
He bemoaned Nkemdiche Ikpeazu, who he said is seeking for third term in the State Assembly without any impact on the constituents or town hall meeting for her eight years in the house, claiming that legislation was beyond painting of schools and drilling of boreholes.
“Those things are not people’s priority. Onitsha South 11 constituency has over 4,000 unemployed youths and 70 percent of them are graduates. They need somebody that will discover their talents and empower them in such a way that they will be self-sufficient and employers of labour in their individual capacities.
“We hope to create entrepreneurship programme to cater for the welfare of the constituents. There is need for synergy between representatives and electorates and that can only be realised through town hall meetings. Onitsha is a business environment that needs representatives that can make enabling laws that will abolish illegal levies by unauthorised agents and touting in the state and, as well, alleviate poverty in the area.
“YPP is a party that can address those needs; it’s a credible and transparent party that treats everyone equally and prioritises town hall meeting by representatives,” he said.