Igbo World Assembly and Nigeria Union of Journalist (NUJ), Anambra council have called on eligible voters, party faithful including the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to ensure that the November 6 governorship election in Anambra State is free, fair and transparent.
Igbo World Assembly (IWA), Igbo World Congress (IWC) and the Civil Society Committee for Anti-Fraud Election Security (CISCAES) made their position known during the launch of the 2021 Anambra Guber-Poll Anti-Fraud Situation Room in Awka, the state capital.
According to some stakeholders who spoke during the event, they said that anything below that standard would not be accepted by Anambra people and all well meaning Nigerians.
This is even as they condemned in strong terms the incessant killings in various parts of the state by gunmen.
President of the World Igbo Congress, Prof. Anthony Ejiofor, who also participated via zoom, urged Anambra people not to go to bed when there is fire in the state ahead of the polls.
“There is fire on the mountain. We must be cautious not to allow Anambra to be destroyed. There is plan to mortgage the aspirations of the people in the coming election. If we allowed Anambra to fall to their caprices, the South East is gone,” he said.
Also, President of Anambra State Association in Germany, Joseph Ebelechukwu, who spoke from Hamburg warned politicians against rigging the poll, making it clear that Anambra citizens in Europe were watching and taking note of everything happening in their state.
“We don’t want our state to go into the wrong hands. We encourage our people to come out on the election day and vote. Information coming to us in Europe is that the Anambra State election has been done and dusted.
Earlier, convener of the meeting and founder of CISCAES, Comrade Kennedy Iyere, said the objective of the meeting was for all hands to be on deck in building an egalitarian society. He noted that having seen and heard the insecurity challenges facing the state especially in this critical election time, everyone should be concerned so that Anambra does not fall into the hands of evil doers.
Comrade Iyere said for the NGO, the means to achieving the goal is by setting up a situation room where information on elections can be reported and which would be monitored by national and international organizations towards a credible election.
He urged journalists in Anambra to serve as watchdogs of the society, use their position to create an enabling environment for all to participate in the election through their reportage, as he said the role of the media towards the growth and development of every society is vital.
The chairman Igbo World Assembly, California, Dr. Nwachukwu Anakwenze who is also the traditional prime minister of Abagana said in his remarks, “we want free and fair election in Anambra, we want an educated person with good work experience, Anambra is not for sale, Anambra is not like other states, Anambra is a home for great individuals like the late Chinua Achebe, the late Dora Akunyili, the late Zik of Africa, the late Chike Obi ‘, the late Kenneth Dike, the late Alex Ekwueme, former Governor Peter Obi, Governor Willie Obiano to mention but a few, and therefore cannot be messed up by any APC or machinations of evil people”.
Former minister of Women Affairs, Iyom Josephine Anini in her own remarks, condemned the killings and described it as an abomination and called on the perpetrators to have a rethink, as she said that human blood is sacred and should be seen as such.