(OPINION) Emma Nwaka: Abia PDP’s Secret Weapon For 2023
TODAY'S NEWS RECAP
Senator Emma Nwaka, a third republic senator and lawyer, is a progressive and dynamic face of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) in Abia State who recently announced his interest in succeeding Dr. Ikpeazu as Abia State Governor in 2023. He is a team player widely loved for his loyalty and contributions to the party. He is also respected as a man of great principle who has executed critical party assignments with integrity and a strong sense of equity.
In the various positions he has held, Commissioner, Party Chairman (2011 to 2015), and Special Adviser, he has earned the high regard of the various cadres of the party for his ability to keep the party’s higher interest in mind. He is a man who doesn’t flinch from telling it as it is.
Because of his well-known reputation as a uniter within the party, he has been entrusted with decisive party assignments and called on to intervene in stalemated primary elections and other knotty party issues.
Nwaka was in charge of the party primary that produced Chief Emeka Ihedioha as the PDP governorship candidate in Imo State. The exercise was widely adjudged as free, fair and transparent and it is a fact of history that Ihedioha, the most popular candidate, went ahead to win the elections even though his tenure was truncated by the controversial supreme court judgment which many observers have described as a black mark in the history of the Nigerian judiciary.
In addition to his long political career which began at age 34 when he was elected a senator during the Ibrahim Babangida regime, Nwaka has had many notable career achievements. He was a non-executive director of the defunct African Continental Bank. He is currently a member of the Governing Council of Abia State University, Uturu and Registrar of Isikwuato/Umunneochi Diocese of the Church of Nigera, Anglican Communion.
He is head and shoulders above many other candidates in terms of political sagacity, understanding of the challenges facing Abia State, practical experience in the topsy turvy world of Nigerian politics and governance, and capacity to bring together the different tendencies threatening to tear the party apart.
Given his political antecedents and strong track record, there is no doubt that Nwaka’s aspiration is a serious one which if successful will ensure that Abia PDP goes into next year’s polls as a united and potent force with a good chance of retaining its control of Government House Umuahia. Nwaka is the uniter and performer that PDP needs to absorb the punches of the well-financed APC machinery in Abia State as well as the other political parties and political interests that have determined to end PDP’s dominance in Abia State.
Also, in keeping with the spirit of fairness in the Abia Charter of Equity, drafted by the founding fathers, Isikwuato where Senator Nwaka comes from deserves to produce a governor, being the only district that has never done so.
On DATE, Nwaka declared his intention to contest the 2023 governorship election on the platform of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) at the party’s Secretariat in Umuahia, making him the first in the state to formally announce his governorship ambition to the party.
Nwaka was accompanied on the visit by party chieftains in Isuikwuato, Bende, and Umuahia, including Chief Ude Obike, Chief Obinna Ekekwe, Chief Onyejelem Amaechi and Navy Capt. Christopher Osondu (Rtd.), amongst others. He had earlier announced his aspiration to his Ward 5 Oguduasa executive in Isuikwuato Local Government Area and the Abia North Zonal executive.
“To be candid, I am really humbled by the high level of acceptability, which my aspiration has generated across the length and breadth of Abia.
“It is in furtherance of my consultations that I am here today before the state Executive Committee of our party.
“It is with all sense of humility and the courage of my conviction that I say to you: Here am I: Send me,” he said, adding passionately that he was poised to add value and make the party and the people of Abia proud in the comity of states.
He promised to rely strongly on the 30-year Development Plan and Urban Development Plans for Ohafia and Umuahia, produced by Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu’s administration to do a new thing in the state.
Senator Nwaka also stated that he would assemble the best hands in the state who would be prepared to offer selfless service to actualize the dreams of Abia founding fathers for a well-developed state.
In assuring the party that he was the right man for the job who would serve with honesty and fear of God to make Abia truly great, Nwaka underscored his well-known reputation for integrity and credibility throughout his career.
“I make bold to say that at this moment in time, I am the safest hand to be entrusted with the governance of our state because you all know from my antecedents that I will run an inclusive government with sincerity of purpose and transparency.
Ever the uniter, Nwaka added, “What is more, I will make sure that no section of the state is neglected.
“Our party men and women know that with me in the saddle, they will not be relegated to the background,” he further said.
Responding, the state party Chairman, Dr. Alwell Asiforo, said he was happy that Nwaka had the courage to seek to become the governor of the state.
He promised that the party would provide a level playing field for all the aspirants during the primaries and will be firm to do the right thing. Dr Asiforo added that the party leadership must not fail to reward those who have contributed to making the party what it is in the state.
By Ogu Ahamefula