Titanic Clash as Soludo Ozigbo Uba Meet at Debate

By Ikeugonna Eleke

Anambra governorship candidate of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Prof. Chukwuma Soludo and his All Progressives Congress (APC) counterparts, Senator Andy Uba and People’s Democratic Party’s Val Ozigbo, last Monday engaged each other over their plans for Anambra people.

Soludo, Ozigbo and Uba, met at the Anambra gubernatorial debate, 2021, hosted by Arise TV and anchored by the station’s award winning journalists; Dr Reuben Abati and Ngozi Alaegbu.

The debate gave the three candidates who were described as leading candidates, the opportunity to speak to the people of the state on their plans. The debate centered on security, economy, infrastructure, education, health and others.

Introducing themselves and the reason for their aspiration, Andy Uba, who called for a minute’s silence in honour of Dr Chike Akunyili and others who had paid the supreme price as a result of the current insecurity, said having been a presidential aide¬† and senator for 16 cumulative years, he felt it was time to work for his people.

Soludo said: ‘Nigeria is going into a transition to a non-oil economy and Anambra should be looking for a transformational leader. Given my exceptional experience and leadership ability, I am offering myself for leadership.

‘I have all my life been an accomplished person and all that I sought in my life I had achieved in the thirties. I served three presidents, founded and co-founded many multi-national companies, including Transcorp, where my brother (Ozigbo) works. It’s time for me to come in and work for Anambra. Time for me to devote my life for the people of Anambra.’

Ozigbo said: ‘Anambra needs a young person who has the zeal to serve and I’m one of them. I am privileged to be here and I represent what Anambra needs now. I have served, I have worked and I’m a philanthropist. We need the right team and we have to synergize to be able to make Anambra a state to be proud of again.’

Speaking on security and how to tackle the issues of secession and agitations by the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), the candidates all agreed that they neither condemned nor supported the agitations of the group, insisting that their agitations could be tackled through dialogue, creation of jobs and youth empowerment.

Ozigbo, speaking on the heavy deployment of security operatives for the election, said he was satisfied about it but stated that he was not happy that things were allowed to deteriorate this far.

He said: ‘Just until yesterday, we still had security issues. How come we have no intelligence anymore? These are the things we should be asking. I am going to solve Anambra problems, security wise, and we know we have the strategy.’

Soludo, speaking on the same issue said: ‘Anambra has remained largely peaceful until recently. It is a challenge and the security architecture is with the Federal Government, and the state governor has less to do, except working with the vigilante.’

Uba, for his part, said he was not afraid that the insecurity in the state may cause voter apathy, saying that successive elections had always registered apathy.

He said: ‘The governor has not done enough in the area of security. Soludo pointed at me while talking about the insecurity in the state. He has to explain that. I have done this before and engaged the youths when I was running for election and they calmed down. It is about jobs and the governor has not done enough in that area; that is why you see insecurity everywhere.’

The candidates also marshalled out their comprehensive plans for the state in the area of education, economy, health and infrastructure, among others.