The ongoing consultations of the Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP) leading aspirant in the 2021 Anambra State governorship election, Valentine Ozigbo, received a huge boost after the Association of Past President-Generals of Anambra State (APPAS) agreed to back his bid as sole candidate.
The decision to formally endorse him at a date to be communicated was made known on Wednesday, December 16, 2020 after a meeting between Ozigbo and over 200 members of APPAS, held at Seagate Hotel, Awka, Anambra State. On the date of the formal endorsement, the association made it clear that Mr. Ozigbo would be invited to sign a pact with them on good governance.
Speaking on behalf of the group, the National President of APPAS, Mazi Omife. I. Omife stated that the group came to the decision after a careful analysis of more than 40 aspirants, who have indicated interest in the state governorship election.
According to Omife, it is public knowledge that Anambra State is far from realising its huge potential and only purposeful, result-oriented leadership will see the state reach the heights expected of it.
Others who spoke on behalf of their respective zones were Chief Chukwuma Chukwukeme (Ekwulimili) and Chief Dr. Ignatius Nnubia (Ihembosi), who spoke on behalf of Anambra South Senatorial Zone; Chief Paul Ogudo (Nibo) and Okwy Ofejimalu (Okpuno), representing Anambra Central Senatorial Zone; Chief Osita Ononuju (Amiyi) and Mr. Peter Nwagu (Onitsha) who spoke on behalf Anambra North Central.
The PGs further stated that APPAS was convinced that Ozigbo has the right skillset, qualities, and character to lead the state to greatness.
The group declared that Ozigbo’s track record shows a trailblazing pattern of excellence from his 17-year stint in the banking industry to his time as MD/CEO of Transcorp Hotels, which saw the hotel emerge as the number one destination in Africa, a feat that saw to his appointment as the President and Group CEO of Transcorp Plc, Nigeria’s largest shareholder-based conglomerate.
While reacting to the decision to endorse him, Ozigbo said that he was “humbled, elated, and inspired” to be so recognised by the respected group. Ozigbo expressed confidence in their judgment and promised to live up to the expectations required of him.
Speaking to journalists after the meeting, Mr. Ozigbo said that the decision of APPAS to throw their weight behind his candidacy was a testament that he was “doing the right thing”. He revealed that he was gaining increasing acceptability, both at the grassroots and within the PDP, which is an indication of the confidence reposed on him and his ability to deliver.
He further stated that what Anambra needs is a trusted chief executive capable of managing resources and the industrious people of the state. He added he believes he has the requisite knowledge to make sure that things get better.