The leader of All Progressives Congress (APC) in Anambra State and the senator representing Anambra Central senatorial district in the upper chamber of the National Assembly, Senator Chris Ngige, has lost his political associate and major backer in the party, Ben Oranusi, to the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA).
Oranusi had yesterday at an elaborate ceremony in Umunze, Orumba South Council Area of the state declared for the APGA along with the state secretary of APC, Hon. Nestor Okoro and over 3,000 supporters of the party, saying that he found after the recent APC convention in Abuja that the Igbos had no future in the party.
He said he arrived at the decision from the way they were sidelined and that the Anambra State Governor, Chief Willie Obiano, had proved after 100 days in office that he remains the only moon shining in the state today.
Oranusi, who was the Chairman of the multi–party coalition that persuaded Ngige at a ceremony in Awka some time in March, 2013 to come and vie for the state governorship, three months before the APC was officially registered as a political party on May 4, of the same year, told the mammoth crowd of APGA supporters that the APC had collapsed in all the 21 council areas of the state and would not be able to field candidates in the state in the 2015 general election.
“After witnessing the recent APC national convention in Abuja and seeing how the Igbos were relegated to the background, I realised that we have no future in the party. Again, I have seen what Governor Obiano has done in 100 days and what he plans to do in the years ahead and needed no soothsayer to tell me that he is the messiah we are looking for. He called for our co–operation in a stakeholders’ meeting he convened at Awka and we have to support him.
“I believe all the Igbos in other political parties should come and join APGA as our own political platform from where we go into the national politics. The chairman of the party, Chief Victor Umeh has proved that he is one leader who can galvanise the Igbos and APGA into a formidable force in Nigerian politics and should be supported”, he said
Oranusi denied that he dumped his political associate, Senator Chris Ngige and the APC because in the South-east generally, the party has rightly or wrongly been branded as the political arm of the militant Islamist sect, Boko Haram, saying that the people developed the notion because most of the party’s founding fathers and leaders are Northern Muslims and the militants are Muslims bombing everywhere.
He said that he did not however follow as its leaders are also decent people, but only that it had no future for the Igbos who needed a genuine political platform like the APGA and that Umeh has shown strong leadership
Oranusi widely considered as the strong man of old Aguata politics comprising Aguata, Orumba North and South council areas was registered as a member of APGA at Umunze ward 1, in Orumba south council area and issued card No: 85338 by the ward chairman, Ezeaka Cletus with the chairman of the party in the local government, Tom Okoli and the executive members of the party in the state and other 20 council areas watching..
Ezeaka who expressed happiness at the turn of event, said they were worried that he joined the APC when they expected him to be in APGA and continue with his service to the people, which he started when he was the chairman of Orumba South Local Government Area Governor Obiano who was represented at the occasion by his Senior Special Assistant (SSA) on Inter-party Affairs, Chief Ben Mbuze Obi, said Oranusi’s defection to the party was a dream come true.
According to him, he was a goal getter and strong man of old Aguata Union (OAU) politics that as chairman of Orumba South council area won many awards for his exemplary leadership.
He urged Igbos in APC and other political parties to come back to APGA and join hands with its leadership to develop Igbo land.
Also speaking, a House of Representatives aspirant for Orumba North/South Federal Constituency on the party’s platform, Chief Ernest Okafor said that Oranusi’s joining APGA was a good omen for the party and the OAU council areas as he is well respected by the people.