- Adopts Adinigwe Nwoke as consensus candidate for Ukwa Federal Constituency
- Urges Asa indigenes not to sell their votes because of ASOPADEC appointment
- Calls on Abia govt to constitute board of ASOPADEC not sole-administrator appointment
- Vows to begin aggressive campaign against PDP, any other party against Asa mandate
Asa Liberation Movement (ALM), a Socio-Political organization of the Asa ethnic nationality, the owners of Ukwa West Local Government Area of Abia State have vowed to prove to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) that their people cannot be subdued into what it termed political slavery anymore.
The ALM took the decision when it began sensitization against vote buying and selling in the 2023 election, a situation which it says cannot be allowed to happen again because of the suffering of the people.
It urged the Asa people to resist all temptations that may try to induce them to sell their votes and elect the wrong person who does not care about them, adding that doing such is tantamount to more than four years of misery and long-suffering in the political abyss of the state.
The ALM advised all Asa sons and daughters not to be deceived by what it termed the “Greek Gift” of appointing an Asa son as the Chairman of the Abia State Oil Producing Area Development Commission (ASOPADEC) and sell their votes for an elective position which is rightfully theirs this time around to someone who does not have their interest at heart.
Also, during one of the sensitization movements at the ancient town of Obehie, the ALM leadership and the entire people present agreed that in 2023, they will vote against the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) candidate, Chris Nkwonta for the Ukwa Federal Constituency, as his candidacy goes against equity, fairness, unity and the original agreement in Ukwa land.
At the sensitization ground, they announced that they have adopted the candidate of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Engineer Adinigwe Nwoke, from the Ipu clan of Asa-land as a consensus candidate after a thorough internal election between him and other candidates in Asa was conducted by the Asa Development Union (ADU) of which the ALM witnessed.
In their recent statement, on ASOPADEC appointment, ALM said that they cannot understand why the state government keeps using the ASOPADEC position for political settlement through the appointment of sole-administrators instead of constituting the board of the agency as it ought to be.
“It’s very unfortunate disheartening that Abia State which has a Governor who’s a PhD holder is operating against the law of the Abia State House of Assembly that says that the sole-administrator of ASOPADEC should be only for three months.
“But the immediate past Administrator, Emeka Stanley stayed for 11 months to one year now the same Governor who’s a PhD holder has gone ahead to appoint another sole-administrator against the law establishing ASOPADEC and bastardizing the law made by the state assembly.
“We want them to understand one thing, the appointment of a sole-administrator from Ukwa West which the government has tactically done will never make Asa people to go against voting for their consensus candidate, Engr. Adinigwe Nwoke. Nothing will stop it because it’s our way of liberating our people.”
Speaking during a Press Conference after the sensitization movement, Emeka Adiele, President of ALM said that the major aim of the organization is to emancipate the Asa people whose quietness and gentle nature have been taken for granted for so long, leading to their relegation in Abia political space.
Adiele said that ALM has not declared war against anybody, but has decided to defend the existence of the Asa people whose existence is under threat, having been removed from anything about political leadership in their constituency.
He said, “We’re not saying that the political leaders of Asa Land have not done their best but when your best is not enough you allow the masses to contribute their own quota in other to achieve the goal.
“We’ve come together to say enough of this marginalization from the state government against the Asa people. Asa cannot have the calibre of people like us and nothing good will come here. I’m not fighting against my party, but I want our rights to be protected.
“In 2018 the elders and leaders of Asa Land vehemently agreed that the position of the Ukwa Federal Constituency be zoned to Asa after the Ndoki brethren have had it for 12 years then, but nothing came out of that as the same Ndoki People took it and has been there for 16 years now.
“Back then, our political leaders looked at the three clans in Asa Land and decided in their wisdom that it should be zoned to the Ipu clan since the Ozaa and the Asa clans had once had their fair shares in the past.”
Adiele said that there was never a time they agreed that an Ndoki person from Ukwa East Local Government Area should take the seat again or anyone outside the Ipu clan and added that despite the agreement, the PDP went ahead to give an Ndoki person, Uzoma Abonta the seat in 2019.
We’ll prove that Asa people are not slaves in Abia State – Asa Liberation Movement
He said that just as the Asa people were yet to recover from that political injury and subjugation, the PDP and the state government decided to add salt to their injury again in 2023 by presenting the same ticket to another Ndoki man, thereby showing us that Asa people do not matter in the scheme of things in Abia State.
He said, “How can we have two local government areas make up a Federal Constituency and just one among the two is favoured politically by the government of the day despite the fact that the Ukwa West (Asa-land) is the centre that gives Abia its 13% oil derivation revenue?
“Today, Asa people have agreed that despite party affiliation, we must work to ensure that an Asa man goes to the green chamber come 2023 and that means we’ve adopted Engineer Adinigwe Nwoke of APGA as the consensus candidate of Asa Land and we’ll sell him to our Ndoki brethren and urged them to see reasons with us.”
Adiele also debunked an allegation said to have been made by the House of Representatives candidate of the Action People’s Party (APP), Chief Sylvanus Nwaji that certain politicians bought cars for him and the ALM spokesperson to gain their support.
He stressed that such allegations are not new to him, adding that he expected such allegations and even more which according to him are all aimed at distracting their mission of liberating the people from political slavery.
Speaking on the opposition against the Ipu clan, Adiele said that Chief Sylvanus Nwaji, the APP candidate is carrying out a campaign of sentiments by saying that an Owaza person should not be supported for the House of Representatives position because an Owaza just vacated the seat of Abia State Oils Producing Area Development Commission
He said, “Nwaji forgot that if there is anybody to be asked to jettison his House of Representatives ambition based on the previous positions held, it should be him because he had been Ukwa West Local Government Chairman for good five times.
“And if you go by how elective positions had been held in Ipu clan, Engr. Adinigwe Nwoke remains the right man to support.
“For example,1979-1983 Mrs Victoria Akanwa held House Of Assembly from Obuzor-Ward,1999-2007 (my own ward), Honourable Ngozi Ulunwa held House of Assembly from Obuzor-Ward,1991-1993 Chief Emmanuel Ogbuji held Executive Chairman from Obuzor-Ward.
“2008-2010 Chief Sylvanus Nwaji held Executive Chairman from Obuzor-Ward and there were no sentiments of all the elective positions going to the political Ward of Chief Sylvanus Nwaji as he has been so sentimental in carrying out his campaigns.
“ALM calls on all Asa sons and daughters to disregard the sentiments of Chief Sylvanus Nwaji and support the candidacy of Engr. Adinigwe Nwoke as Asa consensus candidate for Ukwa East/West Federal House of Representatives come 2023 general election for equity, justice, brotherhood, unity and harmony of Ukwa land.”
We’ll prove that Asa people are not slaves in Abia State – Asa Liberation Movement
Charles Samankwe, Spokesperson/Media Director of ALM charged the people not to entertain any fear, stressing that their names will be written in the record books of Asa-land for participating and sacrificing their individual aims for the liberation of their land.
He urged the people to be resolute to deliver their sole candidate but must avoid any form of insults to their elders and political leaders of Asa-land, whom he said are fully aware that what is about to happen is the right thing, but may have their personal reasons not to come out publicly.
“What we’re doing is not a child’s play. We expect them to come for us. The state government will come for us, but we’ll not fear anybody. We’ll do everything humanly possible to achieve our aims and objectives. We’re fighting for our rights and nobody should entertain any fear.
“There’s no need to paint words. We’re asking for our rights. We’re the goose that lay the golden eggs. It’s justifiable that the position of the House of Representatives in Ukwa is zoned to Ukwa West and micro-zoned to Ipu.
“We wrote to all the political parties warning them not to zone the House of Representatives seat to any person aside from Asa (Ukwa West). The whole political parties heard us but the PDP ignored us and zoned their own ticket to an Ukwa East man, Sir Chris Nkwonta whose brother has been there for 16 years.
“We made it clear that any party who denies an Asa man ticket will be voted out aggressively and we’ll do that. We’re going to carry out an aggressive campaign for our consensus candidate and nobody will stop us. We’ve collapsed all political structures in Asa Land for Engineer Adinigwe.”