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Chairman of the United Nigeria Airlines, Dr. Obiora Okonkwo, has rejoined the Anambra State governorship race, with Zenith Labour Party (ZLP) substituting its candidate with his name.
The substitution of candidates was completed on Friday, July 30, 2021, at the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The Eastern Updates reports that the submission of Okonkwo’s name followed his earlier resignation from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), in protest over the outcome of an illegitimate primary election where the party abandoned its constitution and used an illegal process to pick its governorship candidate. Already the PDP is contending with an avalanche of court cases ahead November 6 election.
Also submitted to INEC was the name of Dame (Barr.) Jessie Balonwu, a former member of the House of Representatives and also a former State Women Leader of the PDP, a running-mate to Dr. Okonkwo.
Dame Balonwu, who is from Onitsha North and South Federal Constituency of Anambra North Senatorial District, was also the first Igbo female senator-elect and Commissioner for education in Anambra state. She also served the state meritoriously as Chairman, Anambra State Universal Basic Education Board (ASUBEB between 2005 and 2007.
Dr. Okonkwo’s movement to ZLP followed a groundswell of pressure from political and community leaders, opinion moulders, stakeholders, support groups, and institutional advocates for the good governance of Anambra State.
The pressure had led to the formation of the Save Anambra Coalition which is an amalgam of advocates of good governance from all the senatorial zones of the state and cut across all political parties and established institutions and faith-based organizations in the state.
The Save Anambra Coalition also consists of former aspirants to the governorship of the state from the different political parties who are not satisfied with the lack of internal democracy and direction of the parties and are also disturbed by the absence of purposeful leadership of the state by the ruling party.
The leadership of ZLP will formally unveil Dr. Okonkwo and Dame Balonwu to the good people of Anambra in the next few days.
THE EASTERN UPDATES