2023: Anyaso, Otti, Quit Abia Guber Race over Alleged Illegalities, Imposition
Emmanuel Ugwu-Nwogo in Umuahia
Mr. Chima Anyaso and Mr. Alex Otti have jettisoned their governorship aspirations on the platforms of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) and the All Progressive Party (APC) respectively over alleged illegalities.
Anyaso, in a letter dated May 24, 2022 and addressed to the national chairman of the PDP, cited the anomalies in the process of picking the flag bearer of Abia PDP.
He said: “This decision is taken to enable me completely dissociate myself from a process that is fraught with irregularities, illegalities and undemocratic acts.
“As a firm believer and disciple of the tenets of democracy, it would be injurious to my reputation, my aspiration and the collective hope of those who believe in me if I go ahead and participate in primaries election that is most undemocratic, and at best detrimental to the progress and development of Abia State.”
Anyaso, who was the PDP’s candidate for Bende Federal Constituency poll in 2015, also restated his position on the controversial three-man delegates list.
He said: “It is a well-known fact that the delegate election, which was scheduled to hold on May 4, 2022, was not held in any of the 184 wards in Abia State.”
He added that “no other date for delegate election was announced, and no delegate election was held by Abia State Chapter of the PDP.”
Anyaso, who is also the PDP National Youth Ambassador, therefore, stated that his campaign organisation “does not see any need to expend our energy and resources to participate in a process that could easily be termed illegal, illegitimate and thrown away when challenged at the appropriate quarters.”
Otti, on his part, said that he was withdrawing from the APC’s governorship primary due to the “strange sharing formula imposed on APC aspirants in Abia State,” which has elicited disapproval by “more than 90 percent of aspirants, leaders and stakeholders” of the party.
Otti, in a statement issued by his adviser on media and publicity, Mr. Ferdinan Ekeoma, noted that the national leadership of the APC appeared unwilling “to allow an open contest that would give room for the emergence of popular candidates who would also enjoy the support of party members and the electorate during the general election.”
He regretted that his party has “stuck to its decision to go by way of imposition of aspirants” hence his withdrawal from the race.
“The constitution of the party and the Electoral Act have no room for coercion and imposition of candidates, hence the wise provision for direct primaries, indirect primaries, or consensus as acceptable modes of electing candidates.
“While the rest of the aspirants had agreed to rally round and support any aspirant that wins the governorship primary through a free and fair contest, a particular aspirant who obviously believes that he doesn’t stand a chance in a proper contest, rather chose to align with outside forces to be imposed on the party,” Otti said.
Otti, who was two time governorship candidate of All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA), hinted that his withdrawal from the race for APC governorship ticket has not in any way doused his ambition to become the chief executive of Abia come 2023, adding that he would look for alternative party platform.
“We are more than ever resolved to pursue our ambition on another platform, and would give it our best to ensure we convincingly and legitimately win the mandate of our people come 2023,” the governorship aspirant declared.