It was wild jubilation in Ukehe, Igbo-Etiti Local Government Area and in Lejja, Nsukka Local Government Area, yesterday, when the Governor of Enugu State and candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party for Enugu North Senatorial District, Rt. Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi visited the two communities to witness the presentation of Christmas gifts to widows and the less privileged by his Commissioner for Lands and Urban Development, Nnanyelugo Chidi Aroh and a member of the Governing Council of the Federal University of Technology, Abeokuta, Barr. Patrick Onyema Omeke, respectively.
Governor Ugwuanyi who received loud ovation from the people of the communities on arrival, got their endorsements to represent Enugu North Senatorial District in the National Assembly in 2023 in recognition of his commitment to peace and good governance as well as his passion for charity, almsgiving and the wellbeing of the less privileged in the society.
In Ukehe, the Commissioner for Lands and Urban Development, Aroh, disclosed that Governor Ugwuanyi has been supporting the widows’ empowerment programme even before he became governor, adding that the event was in line with the governor’s long-held policy of sharing with the needy and the less privileged.
Aroh revealed that the provision of Christmas gift items comprising 2,000 bags of 50kg rice, 2,000 bags of 25kg rice, 2000 bags of 10kg rice, 1,400 pieces of wrappers, 200 cartons of tomatoes, and 200 bags of salt, for the widows, was made possible because of the support that Governor Ugwuanyi has been giving him and his entire family.
Speaking in an emotion-laden voice, the Commissioner on behalf of his father, HRH Igwe Chijioke Aroh and the entire family members expressed immense gratitude to the governor for his love and kindness, stressing that “it is only God that can pay you back.”
Aroh informed Governor Ugwuanyi that the women of Ukehe, who came out en masse, asked him not to bother to come and campaign in the community as they have resolved to deliver him for senate, the PDP governorship candidate in the state, Dr. Peter Ndubuisi Mbah for governor, Rt. Hon. Dr. Martins Oke for House of Representatives and other candidates of the PDP in the state.
“Your Excellency, the women permitted me to say to you that they don’t want you to come for campaign here. I have told you this in private that they said that. I am also repeating it before them. They said you shouldn’t bother coming here for campaign. We will compete with your ward in Orba as to where you will get more votes.
“The promise we are giving you is that not only you; every PDP candidate in the state that is on the ballot paper is Gburuguru’s (Ugwuanyi’s) candidate. None of the candidates including you will lose an election in our place. We will deliver you; we will deliver Dr. Peter Mbah; we will deliver Dr. Martins Oke, Hon. Ezenta and others.
“Our votes will speak of what we think about you and our votes will also speak of what we think about all the PDP candidates in the state. The women have spoken to you from their hearts,” he said.
In Lejja, where leaders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and Labour Party (LP), Hon. Kingsley Ugwuanyi and Uchenna Okpe respectively, led their teeming supporters to formally decamp to the PDP in full support of Governor Ugwuanyi’s senatorial bid in 2023 and that of other candidates of the PDP in the state, the elated people of the community reiterated their endorsement of the governor to represent Enugu North Senatorial District in the National Assembly.
The people of Lejja expressed delight at the commencement of construction work on Lejja-Aku road by Governor Ugwuanyi’s administration, stressing that the intervention is unprecedented as past governments only gave lip service to the construction of the road during campaigns.
The Lejja people who came out in their numbers to receive Governor Ugwuanyi at the presentation of Christmas gifts to the women and the less privileged by Barr. Omeke at his country home, reassured the governor of their overwhelming votes for him and other PDP candidates at the polls.
In their separate speeches, leaders of the decampees from APC and LP in Lejja, Hon. Ugwuanyi and Okpe respectively, said that they joined PDP because of their conviction in the laudable efforts of Governor Ugwuanyi’s administration in providing dividends of democracy in the community.
They pointed out that the governor remembered Lejja in road construction and appointments, disclosing that one of their illustrious sons is the State Coordinator of International Fund of Agricultural Development (IFAD) in Enugu State in the person of Dr. Edward Ishiwu, while their daughter, Evangelist Dr. Mrs. Favour Ugwuanyi, is the Chairman of Post Primary Schools Management Board (PPSMB), among others.
The leaders informed Governor Ugwuanyi that they have collapsed their structures in the opposition political parties for the PDP and will consequently mobilise all their teeming supporters to campaign and vote massively for the governor during the senatorial election and also give maximum support to other PDP candidates in the state.
According to Okpe, a former Labour Party leader in Lejja: “Your Excellency, all the people who accompanied me to this place are members of Labour Party but as things are today in Lejja and with the commencement of the construction of our road by your administration, we have decided to return to the PDP.
“Your Excellency, I am very grateful that work has started on this road. We are going to work with you and support you to win your senatorial election on the platform of the PDP.”
In his words, Hon. Ugwuanyi, a former leader of the APC in Lejja said: “Your Excellency, we are grateful that you remembered Lejja in road construction, and appointed our Mommy, Mrs. Favour Ugwuanyi as the Chairman of PPSMP. You also appointed Chijioke Ugwuoke as Administrator, Nsukka South Development Centre, Dr. Edward Ishiwu as State Coordinator of IFDA in Enugu State, among other people from our community whom you gave appointments.
“These people you gave appointments have been contributing to the progress of Lejja, and I decided to move all my supporters in APC to join the PDP family to move our community forward and deliver you (Ugwuanyi) at the poll to represent Enugu North Senatorial District in the National Assembly, because you are a good product. So, we have joined the PDP family.”
Welcoming Governor Ugwuanyi to his country home, Lejja, Barr. Omeke told the governor that the visit offered their people an opportunity to appreciate him for the commencement of construction work on the long-neglected Lejja-Aku road and inclusion of the project in the 2023 budget estimates.
Barr. Omeke added that the gesture is a confirmation that the road will be completed before the end of the governor’s tenure. He reassured Governor Ugwuanyi of their unanimous decision to vote massively for him to go to the senate to represent Enugu North Senatorial District; vote for Dr. Peter Mbah and his running mate, Barr. Ifeanyi Ossai; vote for Engr. Abba to represent them in the House of Representatives, among other PDP candidates.
Also speaking, the traditional ruler of Lejja community and Chairman, Nsukka Council of Traditional Rulers, HRH Igwe Tony Ojike, the State Coordinator of IFAD, Dr. Ishiwu, the Chairman of PPSMP, Evangelist Ugwuanyi, Barr. Omeke’s younger brother, Emeka Omeke, the Umuadas and representative of the beneficiaries of the Christmas gifts, all applauded Governor Ugwuanyi’s interventions in their community in road construction, water project, health facilities as well as empowerment of their people, restating their resolve to vote for him and other PDP candidates in the state.
The PDP candidate for Nsukka/Igbo-Eze South Federal Constituency, Engr. Abba, the Chairman of Nsukka LGA, Hon. Barr. Walter Ozioko and the party’s candidates for Nsukka East and Nsukka West constituencies, Barr. Mrs. Christiana Onah and Amos Amadi Agbo respectively were at Lejja for the event while the PDP candidate for Igbo-Etiti/Uzo-Uwani Federal Constituency, Rt. Hon. Dr. Oke, the candidate for Igbo-Etiti East Constituency, Rt. Hon. Ezeani Ezenta, the member representing Igbo-Etiti West Constituency, Rt. Hon. Arc James Akadu, and the Chairmen of Udenu and Isi-Uzo LGAs, Hon. Solomon Onah and Hon. Obiora Obeagu respectively, witnessed the programme at Ukehe.