As we move closer to the gubernatorial elections scheduled for April 11, the editorial team at YNaija.com will be endorsing the most suitable candidates contesting in the elections in a handful of swing states across the nation.
We start with Enugu, an influential state in the South east of the country firmly in the grip of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
For most people, the PDP ought to have sewn up the Enugu election even before a vote had been cast. But upon having a closer look, you’d notice that the PDP primary produced four candidates, and has remained contentious. The candidates vying for the PDP ticket are Senator Ayogu Eze, Honourable Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, Dr. Samuel Maduka Onyishi, and Prof. Onyeke Onyeke.
The state chapter of the party, much to the chagrin of the others has endorsed Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, and as such his name will be on the ballot. He has also secured support from Governor Sullivan Chime, who has thrown his full weight on board.
Ugwuanyi is waxing strong owing to the fact that his sponsorship comes from the incumbent and beyond that, Ugwuanyi will leverage his acceptance across the three senatorial districts of the state because of his reputation for generousity.
The APC candidate is Barrister Okey Ezea, a shipping magnate who also hails from the same senatorial district as Ugwuanyi, thus putting paid to any complaints about marginalisation.
Ezea is said to be a very focused individual and has also displayed strength of character. He is, however, said to be a bit soft on people around him, and there is ample fear that some political stakeholders may take advantage of his soft disposition to cage him if elected governor.
Also not counting in Ezea’s favour is that the APC is not grassroots party in Enugu State. This will definitely and negatively affect his ambition to be the next governor of the state.
However, if the PDP is unable to sort out its differences on time, a window may just be open for Okey Ezea who has the financial muscle to compete.
However, these are the facts: Sullivan Chime, has been over the last eight years, one of the best performing governors in Nigeria. He has genuinely transformed what was a poorly managed state under Chimaroke Nnamani in the previous eight years, into one of the few states that is
going forward in terms of infrastructure, and in terms of providing a conducive environment for economic progress.
Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi has pledged to continue Chime’s works, and the closeness of the two men convinces us that this is a genuine pledge. Ugwuanyi was also visible, in a positive way, during his time in the House, so we are convinced that he has what it takes to actually govern. This is one rare case in Nigeria where continuity is desirable, and on the strength of that, we endorse the PDP candidate, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi.