The Labour Party is the ‘first force’ in Enugu State ahead of the 2023 general elections, Barr Okey Ezea, the party’s senatorial candidate for Enugu North District, said Tuesday during the Dream FM Political Voices.
Ezea, during the programme, also explained how he emerged as the senatorial candidate of the party after the erstwhile candidate, Mr Ernest Ike Ugwu, ‘withdrew because it was not the turn of his LGA’.
Quoting him, “We are not banking on rigging. We are not a third force, we are the first force. Despite distractions by the PDP government in Enugu State, we are prepared.”
He spoke about his candidature and how the matter went to court: “Ernest Ike Ugwu withdrew, and LP fielded my name. Then he said his signature was forged. The truth is that my opponent, which is the PDP, never wanted any competition. They wanted a free ride. But this time around, it will be one man, one vote.
“Ugwu withdrew because he came from Obukpa in Nsukka LGA. The senatorial position rotates among the three zones in Nsukka. In 1999, it was Nsukka/Igboeze south which the late Senator Fidelis Okoro took. After that, it went to Igboeze north/Udenu, which produced Senator Ayogu Eze. Then it went to Uzo-Uwani/Igboetiti, which produced Senator Chuka Utazi. This time it is the turn of Nsukka/Igboeze south, and Igboeze south should produce for the sake of equity.”
On who is the guber candidate of the party in the state, Barr Ezea said, “The issue of who is our guber candidate is not in doubt. He went through the LP guber primaries on 4th August, 2022, and won. Go to the INEC portal and check who is there. Forget all the meddlesome interlopers orchestrated by the PDP.
“Chijioke Edeoga will remain on that ticket till 4th March when the election will hold. Before the end of this month, the Court of Appeal will rule on the earlier motor park judgement of the lower court. If the matter goes to the Supreme Court, by 4th March, Edeoga would still be there because there wouldn’t have been a Supreme Court judgement then.”
Mr Aniebo Nwamu, Ezea’s head of media, said the new Electoral Law had rekindled the hopes of electorate for credible polls.
He said, “A lot will depend on what electorate decide. I came into politics this year because of the new Electoral Law, which makes rigging impossible. I stopped voting in 2003 because I couldn’t tolerate rigging I witnessed then. Those that were declared winners never won.
“This year, we encourage people to get their PVCs because voting will count. So long as people will vote, and votes will count, I assure you that Labour Party will win 90 percent of votes in Enugu North. We have organic crowd. We don’t rent crowd.”