The aspiration of former Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo, to fly the flag of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) in the November 16, 2013 governorship election in Anambra is threatening peace in the party.
After a prolonged crisis, APGA recently heaved a sigh of relief when the Court of Appeal sitting in Enugu on July 15 quashed the February 8 judgment of an Enugu High Court which sacked the entire National Working Committee (NWC) of the party.
The reinstatement of the NWC was followed by reconciliation between the National Chairman of APGA, Chief Victor Umeh, and Anambra State Governor, Peter Obi, who was believed to be the mastermind of the litigation.
Few weeks after the reconciliation, Saturday Independent reliably gathered that another upheaval is brewing following the entrance of Soludo into the race for the party’s ticket for the November election.
Close confidants of Obi including his uncle, Sylvester Nwobu-Alor, have reportedly warned him to beware of what they tagged “the Soludo conspiracy” as it could spell doom for him politically.
They are said to have warned Obi to honour the promise he made to Anambra North as nobody would take his words seriously again if he supports Soludo who is from Anambra South.
It was however gathered that the idea to bring Soludo into the race was actually not that of Obi.
Inside sources who pleaded anonymity told Saturday Independent that the plan was actually hatched and executed by leader of the Movement for Actualisation of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB), Chief Ralph Uwazuruike, who was said to have maintained a very cozy relationship with Soludo right from his days as CBN governor.
To actualise the Soludo plan, the MASSOB leader first enlisted the support of Bianca Ojukwu Nigeria’s Ambassador to Spain and widow of late Biafran leader, Dim Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu.
It was in a bid to ensure that the former CBN governor secures the ticket that Uwazuruike and Mrs. Ojukwu organised the reconciliatory meeting between Obi and Umeh.
Shortly after the reconciliation, Soludo resigned from the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the platform he used to contest against Obi in 2010 and registered with APGA in his ward at his hometown, Isuofia.
When contacted, an elder statesman who Obi confides in and has much respect for, confirmed that the Soludo plan was not actually the governor’s idea.
“You see, Governor Obi gives me the impression that Soludo is not his idea but that of the national chairman. He has not told me anything to show that he will renege on his promise to support Anambra North.
“You know that he has reconciled with the National Chairman, but these politicians, you cannot tell to what extent they have reconciled,” the member of Anambra Council of Elders said.
Peace may have finally returned to the PDP in Anambra after all factions of the party attended a rally at Alex Ekwueme Park in Awka to endorse Prince Kenneth Emeakayi as chairman on Friday.
The occasion which was attended by 11 gubernatorial aspirants of the party and the former Senate President Adolphus Wabara and PDP National Vice Chairman (South), Cornel Austine Akobundu, as well as the South East executives of the party publicity endorsed the President Goodluck Jonathan as the sole presidential candidate of the party.
Senator Andy Uba who could not attend the rally told reporters that he had a flight delay and a function at Emmaus House, Awka.
“I had an appointment for 10am and there was a flight delay so I could not attend the rally. But we all agreed that anybody who emerges as the governorship candidate of PDP would be supported by all aspirants,” he said.
Anambra PDP governorship aspirants are former chairman of the party in the state, Dr. Tony Nwoye, Nze Akachukwu Nwankpo, Chief Obinna Uzor and Prince Nicholas Ukachukwu.
Others are Sen. Emma Anosike, Iyom Josephine Anenih, Barr Sylvester Okonkwo, Chief Walter Okeke, Chief Ugochukwu Okeke, Chief Charles Odunukwe and Dr. Alex Obiogbolu.
Nwoye, Okonkwo and Okeke denied reports that they had been disqualified from the race.
Speaking to journalists, Nwoye said he was cleared by the national secretariat, while Okonkwo said the only issue with his clearance was that he presented a photocopy of his receipt instead of the original.
Addressing the crowd, Emeakayi said that the war which crippled PDP in the state had ended.
He said that the import of the rally was to unveil governorship aspirants to party faithful, adding that ward congresses would be held on Monday.
Source: Daily Independent