All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) on Saturday launched its Anambra governorship election campaign at Ekwueme Square, Awka, and presented the party’s flag to Prof Charles Soludo.
In his address, the APGA National Chairman, Chief Victor Oye, said the party’s records in the state are impeccable and nobody can erase them.
In his words, “Our governor, Willie Obiano, has performed creditably and the incoming governor, Chukwuma Soludo, will perform superlatively. There is no political party in Nigeria that has the capacity to turn around the lives of the people as much as APGA has done.”
In his acceptance speech, Soludo thanked APGA leaders and members for their support all through the events that led to his emergence as the party’s candidate.
He said: “With a deep sense of humility and gratitude to Almighty, gratitude to our lovely party that gave me the opportunity to be able to fly this flag, we accept to fly this flag. By the special grace of God, the will and wish of the people have been expressed.
Upon hearing Soludo say: “It’s all about jobs, jobs, jobs for our youths” a group of about 20 girls and boys standing together, all clad in one of the the several pro-Soludo branded polo shirts and Jeans trousers yelled in union: “Yes!”
Theirs was one of the over 30 distinctly -dressed groups that were in Dr. Alex Ekwueme Square, Awka, Anambra State on the wet Saturday, September 25 afternoon as the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) flagged off her campaign for the November 6, gubernatorial election in the state and presented symbols of authority to Prof. Soludo and his running mate, Onyekachukwu Ibezim.
After receiving the flag of the party from the National Chairman of APGA,, who was flanked by leaders of the party and members of the national working committee from various parts of Nigeria, Prof. Soludo expressed his gratitude to God, the party and people of Anambra State for giving him the opportunity. H
He expressed his to the 32 self-funding support groups with over 50,000 members in Anambra and Diaspora that routed for his candidacy for over two years without asking him for any assistance and teeming positive calls even from persons that are not citizens of the state.
The professor of economics and former Governor of the Centraly Bank of Nigeria (CBN) described APGA and the people of Anambra as rare breeds of humans who are peculiar in their resilience against oppression and dogged quest for what they believe in irrespective of whatever force they have to contend with.
He identified them as vanguards of democracy whose keenness for Igbo values, economic development and determination to ensure that the steady progress currently being witnessed in the state is not truncated is marveling.
In the acceptance speech which the Isuofia, Aguata-born macroeconomics scholar of global acclaim, delivered in the company of his running mate, Dr. Ibezim, a physician, he candidate said that their mission to Anambra State’s Government House, Awka is predicated on a goal to bring prosperity and bliss to the state and make it a top destination for investment, industry and tourism.
Establishing the reasoning behind opting for such a mission, he said: “this is carefully thought through and derived from the collective aspirations of Ndi Anambra for us to continue to build a livable and prosperous homeland,” adding that his is a contract with the people to advance Anambra to a “far-far higher level.”
While disclosing the content of his agenda which he had, published in a document, he said that it is ‘The People’s Manifesto.’
His words: “This is Anambra people’s manifesto, a contract with Ndi Anambra, the one that is envisioning Anambra as a five star destination to live, to invest, to work, to learn, and to relax and enjoy.”
Dwelling more on the matter, he said his goal is to make Anambra “a land that any child in it will not have incentive to go to Lagos or Abuja to look for opportunity.”
He turned to the many youths in the rally, who like everybody in the open venue defied a heavy downpour, on their feet, and said repeatedly: “Our youths, we are coming. Have patience. We are coming. Because it is all going to be jobs, jobs, jobs… Wealth creation in your pockets.
“We should be creating at least, one thousand young millionaires, a year and that we should be having at least 130,000 jobs a year in Anambra State. We are coming. We have an agenda to create Anambra to be the digital tribe.”
He also said he has women and traders, “especially _umu boyi_ ” (apprentices) in his detailed plans and added that the funds for financing the agenda “are already there” as the state would not need to go cap-in-hand to anyone for the programs in the manifesto if he is elected the governor.
Upon hearing that the hundreds of young ones in the gathering that made the vast Dr. Alex Ekwueme Square, a sea of heads like a bee hive went upbeat, punched the air and hailed him.
It was an event marked by engaging political speeches by leaders of APGA led by High Chief Oye and the former national chairman of APGA, Sen. Victor Umeh; declaration and restatement of supports for Soludo’s candidacy by groups such as the Anambra State legislators led by Speaker, Uche Okafor and some members of the state’s caucus in Federal House of Representatives, Abuja comprising Chinedu Obidigwe and Dozie Nwankwo as well as the appearances of two former gubernatorial aspirants, ThankGod Ibeh and Emeka Ozoka who earlier vied for the APGA guber candidacy for the November 6 gubernatorial election.
There was also a group of about 50 or more brooms-brandishing All Congress (APC) members who arrived the venue and burnt their brooms to indicate their switch of membership to APGA which Chief Oye described as “a very welcome development.”
Among other bits of the event were appearances of some popular Nollywood actors who hail from Anambra, such as Zubby Michael and Yul Edochie.
Frontline pop music stars of Anambra nativity, Mr Real and Flavour also performed to an enthused audience.
Speaking during the APGA Campaign Flag-off event, the Governor of Anambra State and National Leader of the party, Dr. Willie Obiano, described Soludo as the best candidate to win the November 6 election and one very apt to be the governor of the state.
“He has the cerebral matter to lead a state like Anambra and he knows where to find the money, much more than I do. So a vote for Soludo, APGA, is a vote for the prosperity of Anambra,” the governor said.