With the Supreme Court affirming Mr. Tony Nwoye as the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the November 16 governorship election in Anambra State, political calculations of parties fielding candidates in the election appear to have been significantly altered.
Before Nwoye’s emergence, spin doctors in the ruling All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) had thought through their calculations especially when Mr. Nicholas Ukachukwu headed to the Supreme Court that he would pick the PDP ticket and ease the pressure of choice on the electorate from the seven council areas of Anambra North on whether it would be the APGA candidate, Chief Willie Obiano or Nwoye that they would support.
This, a source said, was because they were aware that their candidate was not a politician parse and Nwoye being one has the grassroots appeal especially among the youth.
The situation, the source said, was worrisome given that before the emergence of Obiano as the APGA candidate, the party had not won elections in the core Omambala local government areas of Oyi, Ayamelum, Anambra East and West in Anambra North senatorial zone even during the second term of Governor Peter Obi.
For instance, he explained that during the governorship elections in 2010, Obi failed woefully in Ayamelum and Oyi which PDP won and was only able to secure 25% in Anambra East and West.
“Now, with both Obiano and Nwoye coming from Aguleri and Nsugbe in Anambra East council area and with the people rooting for Nwoye, while Ayamelum and Oyi being traditional PDP stronghold, it is left to be imagined what will happen,” he said.
In Anambra West council area where the APC deputy governorship candidate hails from, the source said the battle would likely be among the APC, PDP and APGA.
“Since the Supreme Court judgment last Monday, if you ask Anambra North person to vote for the APGA candidate, he would suddenly retort, is Nwoye also not from Anambra North?” he said.
The source, an APGA chieftain who claimed they had returned to the drawing board on how to approach the situation as quickly as possible explained that the original calculation was that if Ngige won in Idemili North, South and Dunukofia council areas in the central zone, and Obiano in council areas in the North zone, and Ukachukwu took the three council areas in Nnewi federal constituency, Anaocha council Area where Peter Obi and Umeh hail from would fall to Obiano, and that the old Aguata council Areas of Aguata, Orumba North and South as well as the fringe council area of Ihiala would be keenly contested for.
“That is no longer the thinking,” he said contending that no right thinking person ignores the PDP and its machinery. “When considered that every other party in the state is one way or the other founded by major players in PDP whose followers may decide to go back to their original party now that they seem to have put their acts together.
“Don’t forget also that Ukachukwu and Andy Uba’s supporters may also work for the success of PDP in the spirit of supporting whoever that emerged as the party’s candidate to ensure victory,” he said.
Meanwhile, Nwoye yesterday intensified his campaigns for the November 16, polls meeting with Traditional rulers, town Union executives, Women and youth groups across some local government areas in Anambra central zone.
He told THISDAY that he was particularly overwhelmed by the support he had received so far and insisted that the state was a PDP state.
The PDP candidate reiterated his desire to make youth empowerment through employment and soft loans as a sure way to tackle the security challenges facing the state since according to him, 99.9 per cent of the people engaged in kidnapping and armed robbery had no jobs nor could they boast of a decent means of livelihood.