Governorship Candidate of Labour Party (center), Sen. Athan Achonu and party faithful at the launch of his campaign for the November 11 poll at Nguru, Aboh Mbaise Local Government Area on Thursday.
By Peter Okolie
Mbaise (Imo), Sept. 14, 2023
The Governorship Candidate of the Labour Party (LP) in Imo, Sen. Athan Achonu, on Thursday, launched his campaign, saying that he will pay priority attention to insecurity, if elected.
In a speech at the event held at the Chioma Ajunwa Sports Complex, Nguru in Mbaise Local Government Area, Achonu described the spate of insecurity in the state as unacceptable, assuring that it must end.
He said that “insecurity has turned Imo into a river of blood and arson”.
He said that “ending the daily massacre of defenceless Imo people and restoring peace, security and tranquility in the state will be my priority agenda upon my inauguration in January 2024.”
The governorship candidate said that he had offered scholarship to thousands of Imo students, employed hundreds as well as invested in agro-industries, regarded as one of the biggest in the South-East.
“The whole blackmail and gangsterism against me were motivated by morbid fear of my towering antecedents.
“Nothing will deter me from my determined march to take back the state from the abyss of mis-governance, back to the path of glory,” Achonu said.
He further pledged to industrialise the state through the establishment of two industrial parks in each zone of the state, including a pharmaceutical park in Orlu zone.
He promised to grant full financial and administrative autonomy to the local government councils, when elected.
The governorship hopeful said that the local government system must be fully functional and alive for real and sustainable development to take place in the rural areas and state at large.
Earlier, the state LP Chairman, Mr. Callistus Ihejiagwa, said the choice of Aboh Mbaise for the launch was deliberate and meant to show solidarity with former Gov. Emeka Ihedioha and the Mbaise nation.
Ihejiagwa said the people of Mbaise were robbed of a well-deserved and popular victory in 2019, hence the decision to start the campaign from there.
“It is to let them know that LP feels their pain and will assuage it when elected into office in November,” he said.
He dismissed insinuations that LP was factionalised with double candidates in the party, saying that the party had only Achonu as its governorship candidate.
In a remark, the Chairman of the Campaign Council and House of Representatives member for Owerri Federal Constituency, Mr. Tochukwu Okere, described Imo as an LP state.
Okere said that all the party’s elected members at the National Assembly were united in strong solidarity and support for Achonu’s candidacy.
He gave assurance that the team would deploy every legitimate weapons in their arsenal to ensure that the party emerged victorious.
Also, the LP deputy governorship candidate, Mr. Tony Nwulu, who hails from Mbaise, said the people of the area had pledged to give the party and its candidate 100 per cent votes.
A prominent Mbaise son and chieftain of the party, AIG Charles Ugomuo (rtd.), told the crowd to “ignore blackmailers and propagandists” claiming that the primary election of the party was not properly conducted.
Ugomuo, who contested the governorship ticket with Achonu, said that the party held the freest, fairest and most credible primary election in the state.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the campaign team earlier visited the Obo I of Obetiti, Nguru Autonomous Community, Aboh Mbaise, Eze R.A. Amadi, at his palace to seek his blessing.