As the quest for 2023 Abia State governorship race gathers momentum, the people of Ohafia, Udumaeze in Abia North senatorial zone, are already making inroads into the minds of who-is-who in Abia, including garnering the support of their neighbours in the senatorial zone, and other communities the state.
Under the auspices of Mben Political Assembly (MPA), elders and senior citizens from the clan have risen to ask for Abia governorship and are getting the backing of top politicians across local governments in the zone and the state.
MPA, a sprouting socio-political pressure group is also the think tank and driving force for the project to the Lion House in Umuahia tagged, “Ohafia for Abia Governor 2023.”
“Based on unassailable arguments we made, notable politicians across parties and communities have agreed to support us to produce the next Abia State governor after Okezie Ikpeazu,’’ the MPA said in a statement signed by its President, Dr. Eme Uche Onuh.
“However, we are still reaching out and will get to every political party and community in Abia State to make our case,” the association said in the statement also signed by elder statesmen, traditional rulers, top businessmen and religious leaders from the clan, including former Finance Minister, Dr. Kalu Idika Kalu; Udumaeze of Ohafia and Head of the clan’s Traditional Council, Professor E. U. Imaga; Nze Uche Uche Ohafia, Prof Ezichi Ituma, Chief Okwara Osonwa Okwara, Chief K. K. Oyeoku and a host of other prominent Ohafia sons and daughters.
The MPA and leaders of the clan stated that the community had supported other clans in the zone to occupy various top positions in the past and are confident that the gesture would be reciprocated come 2023.
“Nde Ohafia supported our brother clans during their ventures and waited patiently for their turn. Every equity-seeking Abian and all truthful Abians will agree that it is time to support the Ohafia, Udumaeze clan to produce Abia governor come 2023,’’ they said.
The group further stated that whereas block votes from Ohafia greatly influence who wins elections in the state, the community which is made up of 26 villages supported other clans to produce Abia State governor, stressing that it is payback time for other Abia clans to, in fairness and equity, support a son or daughter of Ohafia Udumaeze to bring to the benefit of Abia State the doggedness, determination and can-do spirit the clan is noted for.
Recall that Ohafia, Udumaeze, which has the highest number of registered voters in the state after Umuahia North and Obingwa councils, organised a civic reception for Governor Okezie Ikpeazu at the peak of political campaigns last year. The community seized the occasion to ask for the support of the governor, the ruling People’s Democratic Party, other parties and politicians in the state to avoid what they termed an impending orchestrated marginalisation of the clan in the politics of the state.
“As the Abia Charter of Equity runs through the three zones of the state and alights in Abia North for the governorship position in 2023, it’s time the exalted position was occupied by an Abian of Ohafia extraction,’’ the MPA and the leaders of the clan stated further in the statement.
“An Ohafia man naturally has an accommodating mien and a penchant for inclusiveness, so an Abia State governor from Ohafia will have the whole state as his constituency,’’ they said.