Riding on the number of politicians who have left their political parties to support him, the All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship candidate for the upcoming Anambra governorship election, Andy Uba has expressed confidence that more people will join his party.
Briefing a group of journalists in Lagos, Uba said that he has helped more people within and outside the state more than any of the contenders in the race. According to him, he was instrumental in the appointment of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) candidate Charles Soludo as Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria during former President Olusegun Obasanjo regime. Uba said that his grouse with Soludo is that he doesn’t help people.
“That’s my problem with him. I asked him to hire people but he didn’t. You can ask him. Ask him today if there is anybody he has employed, helped in business or anything. Let him show you. Nobody in Anambra will say Soludo has helped me in anything but I have helped a lot. Is it in scholarships? Business? Even the late Dora Akunyili. Whether you are in Anambra or not, I have helped people.”
Regarding the unity of his party, Uba, again, showed confidence that his party is leading in the state.
“We are bringing people together in Anambra. Even the governor’s ward chairman, deputy governor, left him. Everybody is coming to APC. So everyone is voting for me because they have realised that the centre is the key. They don’t know what the centre means. This is our own. You must open your hand and make sure you work with the centre. You can’t compare Anambra to Imo or Ebonyi because they go directly to the President. But the governor goes through Alhaji to the Chief of Staff for him to get to the President.”
He further disclosed that there is no plan for the party to rig the election because they have the numbers.
“We have the House of Reps members, senators, coming in, tell me how we can rig the election? How can you be in a party and they take your chairman, your deputy governor? He has not seen his deputy governor for 18 months.”
Uba also debunked claims that he imported insecurity to scare other candidates.
He criticised the state governor Willie Obiano for his inability to engage with the people to tackle insecurity in the state.
“The governor does not engage. He doesn’t engage at all. How can you now run a system without engaging people? He has not heard from them to find out what their problem is, how do we help them? Everything is about employment. They don’t have money, no jobs, no vocational school. What do you expect them to do? They are living a different life. All is about jobs. If not, they will go into crime.”
Uba expressed willingness to engage different people on the issue of security, particularly on the agitations of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB). Although he hinted at engaging with different people to address the need of the group, he didn’t particularly state that he has been in contact with any of the members.
For Uba, his political weapon is having the right contact. Having been in the system for years, he was able to build a formidable structure when he was in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
“I have been able to maintain my structure since then. That structure is still working with me. That’s why the people are coming back to me. We have more people coming to our party. If he (the governor) is not careful, his wife will join APC.”
He spoke loftily about his time in Obasanjo’s regime, thumping his chest that he was one of the best hands the former president had at the time. However, he was modest to admit that he is not a know-it-all.
“I knew how to bring people together for him. I bring people together to work. When I see intellectuals, I bring them to work. I don’t claim I know everything because I don’t.”
The APC governorship candidate reiterated that his reason for contesting in the election is to help the people who feel disenfranchised by the government and not out of desperation.
” Every day, I say I’m not running, they come crying. They say I’m the only one that can help them. And I see them, I see what they want. I know how they are suffering. My opponents don’t know what the people want. They are up there, they don’t know what’s going on down. I know what I have done for them, each and every one of them, helped them to be where they are today. What am I looking for?”
He also clarified that there is no bad blood between him and his brothers even though they belong to different political parties.
“It’s not about being in the same political party but about who can do the job right. They will take who they want.”