THE Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has declared the candidate of All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, Charles Chukwuma Soludo as the winner of the 2021 Anambra Governorship Election.
Soludo, a former governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, defeated Valentine Ozigbo and Andy Uba, his closest rivals from the People’s Democratic Party, PDP and All Progressives Congress, APC with a total of 112,229 votes, representing 45 per cent of the total votes cast in the election.
Ozigbo, on the other hand, scored a total of 53,807 votes, followed by Uba, who recorded a total of 43,285 votes, leaving the remaining 32,202 votes to the 15 other political parties that contested in the Anambra gubernatorial election.
According to the INEC, the total number of registered voters in the 2021 Anambra election is 2,466,638; accredited voters number is 253,388 and the total votes cast is 249,631.
Having met all the necessary conditions of a gubernatorial election, the returning officer for the 2021 Anambra governorship election, Professor Florence Obi, announced that Soludo is the next governor of Anambra State.
There are 21 local government areas in Anambra State, and Soludo snatched victory in 19 of them, including Ihiala, where a supplementary election was conducted after a 72-hour delay.
YPP candidate Ifeanyi Ubah, who currently represents the Anambra South District in the Senate, won only in Nnewi North Local Government Area with 6,485 votes. In comparison, Ozigbo won in Ogbaru LGA with 3,445 votes.
Recall that APGA, the political party of the late Biafran warlord, Odumegwu Ojukwu, founded in 2002, has been producing governors of Anambra State since 2006 with the emergence of Peter Obi.
He was again declared winner of the 2007 election by the Supreme Court after Andy Uba was removed on 14 June 2007.
Willie Obiano, the incumbent governor, won 180,187 votes in 2013, defeating PDP Tony Nwoye and APC Chris Ngige, who scored 97,700 and 95,963, respectively.
Ifeanyi Ubah, who then contested under Labour Party, came fourth with 37,495 votes.
The voters’ turnout in 2013 indeed was significantly low, with the vote count standing at 442,242 compared to nearly 1.8 million registered voters. But the voters’ turnout in the subsequent elections has worsened.
In 2017, the voters’ turnout came down to 422,314 while the total registered voters were 2,064,134, a drop of 4.5 per cent.
Notwithstanding, Obiano was returned as governor with a total vote of 234,071 when he defeated, for the second time, Nwoye who had then defected to APC.
That year APC scored 98,752 votes followed by PDP Ozelokoya Henry Obazue, who scored 70,293 votes.
Considering its successive victory in three elections cycles, APGA has established itself as the most popular party in Anambra State.
Though APGA is perceived as the political party of the people of the southeast, its stronghold is limited mainly to Anambra, as four other states in the East are currently under the control of the opposition parties.
For instance, the governors of Imo and Ebonyi states, Hope Uzodinma and Dave Umahi, who were elected as PDP candidates, have defected to the ruling party, APC.
In contrast, the Abia and Enugu state governors Okezie Ikpeazu and Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi remain in PDP.
Rochas Okorocha, who was elected on APGA’s platform in 2011, defected to the APC in 2013.
Speaking about their victory, the National Chairman of APGA, Victor Oye described the party as a ‘religion in Anambra.’
Soludo will be sworn in March 2022 as the 7th governor of Anambra since 1999.