FEATURE ARTICLE

Comrade Ifeanyichukwu MmohMonday, November 27, 2017
[email protected]
Jos, Nigeria

THE NEED TO APPLAUD ANAMBRA'S PEACEFUL ELECTIONS


s a firm believer in the power of principles, I know that it worked when applied according to as prescribed. The observant analyst would say 'Well done' to Ndi Anambra for their general conduct in the just concluded elections. It has been described as peaceful, orderly, excellent, matured and devoid of that do-or-die mindset that usually characterized Igbo politics in contemporary Nigeria. What's more? Not even the threat from the now proscribed IPOB could provide the excuse for Ndi Anambra to sit at home on election day as used to be the case.

It was a dream-come-true - for me - that by that manly conduct, the electorate had shown the world that it was possible for Nd'igbo to handle their affairs without allowing room for a third party. Finally, all could see that when principles are applied as prescribed, it worked regardless of ethnic group or geopolitical zone. It was one electoral exercise which - if built upon in subsequent elections - had laid a solid foundation for what may become a new way to play politics among Nd'igbo.

We all know how the process of choosing who to govern the state has been since the start of the 4th Republic. It has been so bad, so attached to godfatherism and so lightly-taken that one usually thought that Ndi Anambra were never going to grow out of the mindset of infighting and nonchalance. It started with Dr. Chinwoke Mbadinuju and his sponsor who quickly converted the treasury of the state into a private ATM machine for themselves and their cronies.

For four years, Anambra knew nothing like the dividends of democracy. Assessing the Mbadinuju's administration 14 years down the line, one can only point at the notorious Bakassi boys who reigned supreme back then as his achievement. Good road networks or consistent payment of salaries of civil servants or even payment of pensioners' stipends all were not considered as government business. What was business for government then was the steady and diligent disbursement of public funds to the Godfather.

Following the fall-out in relationship, Chief Chris Uba eventually emerged from the old bloc to become the newest Godfather and, Dr. Chris Ngige came on board as a replacement for Dr. Mbadinuju. The PDP's hold on Anambra politics was slowly losing grip but then, it took the timely intention of our courts to save Ndi Anambra from the vicious grip of a visionless leadership. Enter Mr. Peter Obi. Mr. Peter Obi came into office following the nullification of the PDP's mandate for Dr. Chris Ngige and, reigned for 8 good years.

The current wave of developmental consciousness in governance actually started with the Dr. Chris Ngige's administration. However, Mr. Obi contributed to that consciousness immeasurably and cemented all his achievements by handing government unto another visionary - in the person of Dr. Willie Obiano! Even though he turned around to try to set up another Godfather structure by anointing and standing behind Mr. Oseloka Obaze, the elections' outcome had spelt it loud and clear that Ndi Anambra had long bid bye bye to Godfatherism.

And to prove this, they kept their cool during the campaigns and avoided as much as possible the resort to hate speech, violence or to attempt on the life of any of the 37 candidates. The political actors and their followers all demonstrated that Anambra's welfare was far more important than their individual interests. In the end, they came away with a solid victory against godfatherism! This is very commendable judging from the ugly past we just recalled. Ndi Anambra has set a solid record!

Now for every accusation of in-fighting in Igbo politics, there would be the testimony of Ndi Anambra to at least counter it. When folks who have found the excuse to deny Nd'igbo their fair share of the national cake came calling again, there will the Ndi Anambra testimony to confuse their facts.This is my joy and, also the reason why it'll be important if the other states of the Southeast geopolitical zone emulated this noble example. Elections should not be a do-or-die affair and by the way, Nd'igbo can play a better one-voice politics than their counterparts from the other tribes.

Let me congratulate the governor-elect Dr. Willie Obiano and also the wonderful people of Anambra state of Nigeria once again. Ndi Anambra, Nde'ewo Da'aluu nu!!!

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