Anambra Politics: The Pulse Of The People

(By Fredrick Nwabufo)

The stature of the candidates for the election and their motley of perceived deficiencies or weaknesses deepen the Anambra people’s apathy and disinterestedness. It is not uncommon to hear Onitsha market traders use uncomplimentary language against them.  They say they are in an enterprise of primitive accumulation and that they want more, propelled by atavistic greed. This is the common utterance of traders who constitute the majority in the class of commoners in Anambra State.

THE Anambra people have had enough. Their ostensible avidity regarding the politics of the formidable state in the South-East of Nigeria, Anambra, has reached breaking point, and has waned to nadir.   They have witnessed the state go dramatically from bad to worse. They have always been given a raw deal by their state governments. They have been deceived, bruised, starved, brutalised and tortured mentally with political chicanery, lies, hoaxes and false hopes. In tandem with that, they have experienced an array of political hooliganism, banditry and piracy. They have never had it good. It has always been a tortuous existence and political experience for the Anambra people. All their state governments – the past ones and the present one have mastered ways to screw them in the most delicate orifices.

  Anambra State without a doubt can be said to be one of the states in Nigeria with infinitesimal state government emblem of development. The state capital, Awka, is a sprawling igloo, a microcosm of the ramshackle dome.

   As a matter of fact, the Anambra people have never depended on their state governments. They have always, using dexterity, ingenuity, self-effort and mental craftsmanship, developed their various sections of interest in the state the little way that they can. They have always contributed monumentally to the developmental crafting of the state. For example, it is a fact that most families in Anambra State do not depend on the state government for potable water supply. They dig bore-holes in their homes to cater for their water needs. In fact, the Anambra people have always been progressive in driving development their own way. And to say the least, there is minimal positive government impact on their lives.

  It is within the remit of these claims, that the pulse of the Anambra people should be checked. It is glaring to a wary observer that the relationship between the people of Anambra State and their state government today is one of dissonance. The people of the state have been in an abusive marriage in which the frequency of assault is alarming. And that has occasioned them to develop a strong repugnance for their state government.

  Again, the discordant situation is one of bad divorce. The Anambra people are, by a wide margin of universal calibration, detached from their state government. It is therefore not surprising, the growing indifference of the Anambra people towards the gubernatorial election billed to take place on November 16, 2013. To them it is a “lose-lose” situation. It is a Scylla and Charbydis. They have always had it bad.

  The stature of the candidates for the election and their motley of perceived deficiencies or weaknesses deepen the Anambra people’s apathy and disinterestedness. It is not uncommon to hear Onitsha market traders use uncomplimentary language against them.  They say they are in an enterprise of primitive accumulation and that they want more, propelled by atavistic greed. This is the common utterance of traders who constitute the majority in the class of commoners in Anambra State.

   Inter alia, all the candidates seem to suffer different assumed political defects which in the eyes of some Anambra people are not negligible or irrelevant to warrant sweeping them under the carpet. Dr Chris Ngige’s unfortunate political defect is his political party, the All Progressives Congress (APC), which a good number of Anambra people have construed to be a locomotive for driving the Yoruba/Hausa interests. This conception of the APC by some Anambra people is the chink in Ngige’s armour the way it seems.

  For Ifeanyi Uba of the Labour Party (LP), his antecedents betray him. These are his inglorious records effectuated as a result of his implication in the subsidy scam even though he has been cleared by the courts. In addition, he has the air of a typical Igbo businessman who believes albeit ignorantly that his money can get him anything he wants. This is the popular view in certain quarters in the state.

 For Willie Obiano of APGA, his assumed political defect is his supposed inexperience and Peter Obi’s unimpressive nudging. Obi’s overt endorsement and support of Obiano reminds some Anambra people of the evil epoch of god-fatherism in the state. Obiano is Obi’s boy whose game, it is feared, may be to protect Obi’s interests.

   For Tony Nwoye whose party the PDP is locked in a crisis, it is his personality. Perhaps, unkindly stereotyping him, Nwoye is perceived as someone who on getting to power may continue and perpetuate the Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP) reign of impunity, corruption and exploitation at the centre in the state.

  These are the pot-pourri of divergent views about the candidates that can be picked up in the streets of Anambra. In general, however, the pulse of the electorate in Anambra on the forthcoming gubernatorial election appears weak.

• Nwabufo is a writer and a poet.

“Opinion pieces of this sort published on RISE Networks are those of the original authors and do not in anyway represent the thoughts, beliefs and ideas of RISE Networks.”

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