As the crisis in the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), deepens, members of the party loyal to Chief Martin Agbaso, on Monday chose Chief Ifeanyi Igwebuike as their candidate for the Nov. 18 gubernatorial election in Anambra.
Igwebike emerged from a unanimous decision at a congress of 1,090 delegates held in Ezira, Orumba South Local Government Area.
It would be recalled that the Dr Victor Oye-led faction of APGA had last week at its primary in Awka, chosen Gov. Willie Obiano of Anambra as its candidate for the election.
Addressing newsmen on the election, Chief Azubuike Iloh, factional Chairman of the party in Anambra, said the real candidate of APGA for the election had emerged.
Iloh said they chose a venue outside the state capital because they were prevented from using the original venue in Awka by security agents under the instruction of the state government.
“Agbaso remains the legal and authentic chairman of APGA and is the only one to produce the candidate of the party for the election.
“Whoever emerges as candidate from other faction is a nullity as only Agbaso’s leadership is recognised under the law at the moment.
“Four persons were ready for the primary but because of the sterling qualities of Igwebuike, others stepped down for him.
“We could not hold the exercise in Awka because the government of the day does not want people to express their sincere political view. They used the police and other agencies to cordon off the venue,’’ he said.
In his acceptance speech, Igwuebuike thanked the party members for nominating him as their candidate.
He said the party was sure to retain the state government if everybody support him in the race.
“APGA needed transparency, sincerity and unity and that is what we have under Agbaso, this is why we joined hands with him.
“Under the new leadership, Anambra people will have their desires and aspirations realised, so, we are calling on all to come into the party.
“I thank every member of APGA and its leadership for trusting in my ability to bear the party’s flag and give it victory on Nov.18,’’ he said.
In a telephone interview Agbaso said there was need for people in power to allow the citizens to express their opinions unhindered.
He congratulated the candidate and urged him to represent the true identity and ideology of APGA.