Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra has no commitment to deliver anyone as a candidate of All Progressives Grand Alliance for any post in the 2019 general elections, an official has said.
Chief Ifeatu Obi-Okoye, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Political Matters, made the statement in an interview in Awka on Thursday.
Obi-Okoye said the governor as the Chairman of APGA Board of Trustees and Leader, was committed to ensuring that the party primaries were conducted freely and fairly.
He described the large number of persons seeking the ticket of the party as affirmation that it was a viable platform in Anambra but stressed that no one should expect special treatment.
He said: “It is good that quite a huge number of party members are interested in contesting for one position or the other under APGA.
“That in itself is a testimony of their confidence in the party and the capacity of the party as the vehicle for their attainment of their political ambitions.
“The government will naturally not interfere in the mechanics of the process which will produce anybody as candidate of the party but we have a special case where the governor is also the leader of the party.
“To that extent, the constitution gives him some role he most play as leader that means some direct or indirect interest on how the primary will go and how the candidates will emerge.”
The political aide said Obiano was not under any commitment to ensure that any particular aspirant emerged as candidate but gave an assurance that the constitution and guidelines of the party would be respected.
He said Obiano was rather under pressure to deliver on his commitment to deliver good governance to the people of Anambra.
Obi-Okoye said: “The governor is not under any political pressure rather it could be the pressure of sourcing fund to finance the economic blueprint of the government.
“Every other governor in Nigeria who feels the pulse of the people and wants to deliver must be under similar pressure because of the cash crunch.
“Politically, there is no pressure because the governor is not under any commitment to any individual above his commitment to the welfare of the party or ensuring that the party functions according to the constitution.
“Crises arise after primaries not because some people lost but because the primaries were not organised under a free and fair manner.
“When it is conducted in accordance with the provisions of the constitution and guidelines and no apparent case of rigging and favouritism, people are bound to accept the result in good faith.
“So, we are working largely to ensuring that there will be a free and fair primary for everybody irrespective of whether you are an incumbent or coming as a commissioner.
“We will encourage the party to conduct a free and fair primary to bring out the best among the contestants, people will win and people will lose but they will be glad with parameters that determined the contests.
“It may not matter, there a lot of people who served in the last administration will be running, that does not put the governor under any form of pressure.
“He has promised that there will be free primary and that is what should concern every genuine member of APGA, no member should be asking for special favour; that is not democracy; they should rather ask for free and fair conduct.”