26th October, 2021
The All Soludo Support Groups (ASSG), which comprises the 34 support groups of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) candidate, has declared the Andy Uba candidature dead on arrival.
This happened less than 24 hours after the Coalition of Civil Society Organizations (CCSOs) in Anambra State asserted that the APC has no candidate in the November 6 gubernatorial election in the state. That was based on Department of State Security (DSS) and Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) reports on the June 26 APC primary election which showed that the election did not hold.
Chinedu Nwoye who leads the ASSG said: “The mess with the candidature of the supposed APC candidate goes far beyond the legal status of the INEC and DSS reports or even the suit filed at the Federal High Court by a political party against Uba over his false secondary school certificate. There was also the action by Chief George Moghalu, the chief executive of the National Inland Waterways Authority, at the Federal High Court against the alleged nomination of Senator Uba as the APC candidate based on the phantom June 26 state congress.
“The main problem rests on the antecedents of the former senator”.
The Soludo group accused Uba of a stubborn refusal to apologise for his role in the destruction of Ibeto Cement owned by Chief Cletus Ibeto, a leading industrialist from Nnewi in Anambra State.
Remarked the statement: “Andy Uba should come out clean and tell both ndi Anambra and, indeed, all Nigerians his part during the President Olusegun Obasanjo administration in the ruination of Ibeto Cement, a much beloved brand in the whole of the Southeast and South-south geopolitical zones of Nigeria which the late President Umaru Yar’Adua from Katsina State brought back to life on coming to office in 2007”.
The statement said that Nigerians are not expecting Uba to apologise due to what it called his stubbornness and arrogance, asking rhetorically, “Has he apologized for the mayhem in Anambra State in November, 2003, when all key institutions of the state were destroyed? Or has he apologized for the abduction in July, 2003, of Governor Chris Ngige, the current Minister of Labour and Employment? Has Andy apologized for the illegal impeachment of Governor Peter Obi which he induced and sponsored so that he would take over the governorship even when Obi had three years in office? Has he apologized for getting Professor Maurice Iwu’s INEC during Obasanjo’s regime to illegally and callously disqualify both Dr Ngige and Chief Obi as gubernatorial candidates in 2007 so that he would be become the Anambra governor practically unchallenged?”
The Soludo group described as unacceptable Uba’s reported private apology to Senator Ngige for his misbehavioud when he wielded so much power during the Obasanjo era.
“He should apologise to all Anambra people in public”, it demanded, “because the terrible havoc he wrought was on the whole state rather than on Governor Ngige, though the latter could have died in one of the several anti-democratic operations which compelled the great Professor Chinua Achebe to denounce Uba and his cohorts as ‘a small clique of renegades determined to turn my homeland of Anambra State into a lawless and bankrupt fiefdom’”.
The group said that Uba knew he would resoundingly be defeated by each of the other 13 APC aspirants, and so decided to hijack the congress scheduled for June 26 in a mafia-style operation.
“All 13 other aspirants have deserted him”, noted the statement.
“The consequence”, said Nwoye, “is that the APC has been stuck with a candidate who is not only unmarketable but dead on arrival”.
However, Victor Ogene, spokesman for the Uba group, dismissed the allegations.
He told PMNEWS: “With elections less than two weeks away, desperados working for equally desperate politicians are on the prowl, disseminating falsehoods against leading candidates.”
The allegation by this group, according to Ogene, “is strange to us, as our Principal, Senator Andy Uba is renowned for having used his position in the Presidential Villa, and closeness to then President Olusegun Obasanjo to assist many Nigerians, especially his kith and kin of the Southeast.
“For instance, it is a very well known fact that he influenced the appointment, to high positions, of the many South easterners who served in that administration.”
Regarding the specific allegation on Ibeto Cement, Ogene asked the question: “Did Chief Cletus Ibeto, a respected and respectable Igbo leader and industrialist tell them this tale, or mandated them to lay this charge? The answer is a resounding NO.
On the contrary, only few days ago, Chief Gabriel Chukwuma of Gabros fame and his younger brother, Innocent Chukwuma of Innoson Motor Manufacturing company – both from the same Nnewi as Chief Ibeto – gleefully told, in a well trended video, the story of how the same Senator Uba was the instrument God used to sustain and promote their business.”
He continued: “While we concede that we’re in perilous times occasioned by politics, we urge foot soldiers of arrogant and desperate power seekers not to drag the esteemed name(s) of leading Igbo sons and daughters into the murky waters of bitter politicking.”