BY EMEKA EJERE
Prof Chukwuma Soludo, of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), has described his victory in the 2021 Anambra Governorship Election as a reflection of the will of the people.
This was part of his acceptance speech shortly after he was declared winner by the Returning Officer, Prof Florence Obi, on Wednesday morning at the INEC office in Awka, Anambra State.
“That Charles Chukwuma Soludo of APGA, having satisfied the requirements of the law is hereby declared the winner and is returned elected,” Obi, who is the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Calabar said.
Soludo, who was the governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) between 2004 and 2009, was declared winner after a supplementary election was held in Ihiala Local Government Area of the state on Tuesday. He won 19 of the 21 local governments areas including Ihiala LGA.
61-year-old Soludo won with 112,229 votes beating Valentine Ozigbo of the Peoples Democratic Party, who polled 53,807 votes, and Andy Uba of the All Progressives Congress who got 43,285 votes. Ifeanyi Ubah of the Young Progressive Party polled 21,261 votes came fourth.
During his acceptance speech, Soludo said, “Let me say with utmost humility and gratitude to God, I accept the results of the 2021 Anambra Governorship Election as declared by INEC. And this reflects the supreme will of the Almighty God and an overwhelming sacred mandate of the people…This is a divine journey whose time has come.”
“The election itself tested the integrity of our federal institutions. Many times there were tensions, especially as one party boasted that it must take or ‘conquer’ but the judiciary stood for the integrity of the judiciary,” he added.
The winner also thanked the incumbent Governor of Anambra State, Willie Obiano and President Muhammadu Buhari, amongst a list of persons.
He promised to deliver the dividends of democracy to the people of the state while extending an olive branch to his contenders in the race.
Soludo is expected to be sworn into office next March after the expiration of the two-term tenure of Obiano, who is also of the All Progressives Grand Alliance.