Soludo, Anambra governorship poll and matters arising

Soludo, Anambra governorship poll and matters arising
July 18
20:44 2021


The die is cast as November 6, 2021 represents a veritable opportunity for the good people of Ndi Anambra State to vote for a new governor for the “Light of the Nation”.

It is instructive to state that Anambra State deserves a dynamic and resourceful personality as its governor.

With the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) as the ruling party in Anambra State for 15 unbroken years, it is clear that Ndi Anambra are very happy with the party.


There is no gainsaying that APGA under the successive administrations of Peter Obi and incumbent Willy Obiano has transformed the state.

The development explains why most sons and daughters of Anambra State have been in high spirit since the emergence of a renowned economist and former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Prof. Chukwuma Soludo, as candidate of the ruling APGA in the state’s forthcoming governorship election.

An economist of repute, Soludo was born on July 28, 1960. Before his sojourn to CBN, Soludo was appointed as the Chief Economic Adviser to former President Olusegun Obasanjo as well as the Chief Executive Officer of the National Planning Commission of Nigeria.


To underscore the quest for Soludo to become next governor of the state, two incumbent members of the House of Representatives, Hon Chiedu Obidigwe (Anambra East/Anambra West} and Hon Dozie Nwankwo (Aniocha/Njikoka/Dunukofia) accompanied Soludo when he visited APGA headquarters in Awka to declare his governorship ambition and seek the party’s ticket to contest in the forthcoming state governorship election.

As a mark of their support, Obidigwe and Nwankwo affirmed Soludo’s capacity to give the state an unprecedented governance if he becomes governor.

Some members of the APGA Board of Trustees (BoT), including Chief Rommy Ezeonuka, wife of the late Second Republic Vice- President Alex Ekwueme, Mrs. Ifeoma Ekwueme and proprietor of JEZCO Group, Chief J. J. Ezeokafor, among others also accompanied Soludo to the declaration ceremony in Awka.

Speaking to the APGA faithful when he visited the party office in Awka, Soludo disclosed that his ambition to govern Anambra State was born out of altruism, saying that as a son of the state, he wants to give back to his state the special talent God freely endowed him with.


Soludo said, “ The grace of God has been upon me that at a relatively very young age, He has blessed me beyond any imagination that by the time I was 34 years old, I had met the requirements to be a professor. I was actually appointed one by a state university at 34, but I insisted that it would be at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, that it will happen. And a few more years, I became a professor. And in my 30s, I have travelled to 45 countries of the world. They were calling me to come and advise them.

“I have consulted for 20 international development and financial institutions around the world. This was what I was doing when I was invited to come and assist in Nigeria. And I came home and served as Chief Economic Adviser, and (later) Governor of Central Bank. I have served the world. The United Nations invited me when the global financial institutions were collapsing in 2008. We were 10 persons, the United Nations assembled from across the world and, I was the only person from Africa to come and rescue the situation. When we finished the assignment, I came back to Nigeria. I designed the National Economic Development and Empowerment Strategy (NEEDS). The implementation did not only give Nigeria debt relief, it also brought unprecedented prosperity in the history of Nigeria and created over 12.8 million jobs for our youths. It never happened before.

“I was later appointed as the CBN governor. By then if you deposit your money in the commercial bank, you would not be sure of its security. I hope everybody here knew this to be true? I said no, this is not proper. I therefore told Nigerians that I was going to pull down the nation’s banking sector to rebuild it in 18 months. “Everyone doubted me, saying that it was impossible; that I cannot do it. But I told everyone that where you people are seeing a wall, I am seeing a way. And in 18 months, we built a new banking sector.

“Before I became CBN governor, there was no Nigerian bank that was among the top 1,000 banks in the world, not one. But three years after I came in, 14 of them were in the top 1,000 banks in the world. And actually, three of them are in the top 300. And I promised Nigerians one thing: that after this revolution, no person will ever lose his money again in a bank, and I kept my word and that is the promise till today. No bank has failed, nobody has lost a penny any more, unlike before when you would wake up to be afraid if the money you saved in the bank is still there.


“What was popular in everyone’s lips then was ’my money is trapped here, my money is trapped here’. My own was also trapped then. This is no more the situation in Nigeria today. With your ATM card, you can now go to any commercial bank branch and withdraw your money easily. We have to join the rest of the world. We have to be running at a speed of a 1,000 kilometre per an hour for us to meet up. And today, the banking system which they said was impossible to do became possible”.

Soludo, however, told his supporters that he is not unaware that it is not going to be an easy walk to the Government House, Awka for him and indeed for APGA to retain the governorship position in the forthcoming governorship election.


The Chairman of Soludo’s Isuofia Ward, Chief Okeke Anthony, said that Soludo has been patient with his ambition to become governor of the state. He stated that the APGA leadership had approached him in 2013 with an offer to him to come and fly the governorship flag but later advised him to suspend the aspiration to pave way for the zoning of the ticket to the North Senatorial zone. He said that as a loyal party man, he accepted and has been contributing to the growth of the party.

In her own opinion, a human rights lawyer in Enugu Bar, Bar Chidi Obeke, said that Soludo has all the time been responding to a popular and sustained demand of his stewardship by the Anambra people since 2010. She reiterated that it is service to change the fortune of the Anambra people that drove him into politics.


She said, “This fortune luckily has started changing through the immediate past administrations and Soludo more than any other candidate who has obtained the nomination is more skilled, experienced, talented as well as gifted to take Anambra State higher and higher.

“Governance in my own opinion should not be left anymore to tainted politicians and it is a matter too serious to be left in the hands of street urchins. He has what it takes and I believe Ndi Anambra are too noble a people to make any costly mistake.”


As the people of Anambra State go to the poll on November 6 to elect a new governor, stakeholders will converge in the state to witness a change of baton from Obiano to the new governor .

Adediran, a public affairs analyst, contributes this from Enugu


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