The fire appears to have gone out of the ambition of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the race for the Anambra State Government House, as growing insecurity in the state and the South-East generally has forced the party’s governorship aspirants to doubt its chances in the November 6 election.
Despite the declared ambition and commitment of the stakeholders to wrest power from the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) in the state during a recent meeting which attracted all the nine aspirants, there had been general concern that security challenges in Anambra and neighbouring states of Imo and Enugu states might negatively affect the APC’s performance and by extension, the candidate that would eventually emerge, regardless of his pre-contest popularity.
This reasoning appeared to have generally taken a toll on the desire of some of the aspirants to part with a staggering N22.5 million to obtain the expression of interest and nomination forms almost one month after the party announced that they were up for sale.
A close party source disclosed that the aspirants had been apprehensive.
“Initially, the fear some of the aspirants expressed was that of imposition of a candidate or emergence of a consensus candidate after individual aspirants had paid the nomination form.
“The party has allayed that fear. Yet, as you can see, they are not coming forward to obtain the nomination form, so something is wrong,” the source submitted.
As at Friday April 30, only one aspirant, Senator Andy Ubah, was rumoured to have obtained the party’s governorship nomination form through a third party.
The rest had largely stayed away, ostensibly wondering whether the gamble with N22.5 million was worth it.
At the recent interactive session organised by Anambra Patriotic Forum, the nine APC aspirants were unanimous in their demand for a free, fair and credible governorship primary, which they said would ensure the party’s unity after the primary.
Another revelation of the forum was the fact that former governor of the state and Minister of Labour and Productivity, Senator Chris Ngige, might have rested his governorship ambition.
After the initial appearance of posters, it appeared Ngige had opted for an elder statesman’s role as his name was conspicuously missing among the aspirants.