Geoffrey Anyanwu, Enugu
The South-East Amalgamated Markets Traders Association (SEAMATA) yesterday warned political parties participating in the forthcoming Anambra State Governorship election against using undemocratic principles to elect their candidates.
The umbrella union of traders in all markets in the South-East which said its members made up 75 per cent of the voting population disclosed its resolve to fully participate in the election.
In a statement signed by Chief Gozie Akudolu and Mr Alex Okwudiri, President-General and Secretary-General respectively of SEAMATA and made available to newsmen in Enugu, the association vowed that its members would not vote for political parties whose candidates emerged from undemocratic process.
Encouraging the political parties in the state to ensure that their candidates emerge through democratic, free, fair and credible process the leaders said, “The association resolved to contribute their quota towards the sustenance of civil democratic rule in our nation.
“The association calls on all political parties participating in this coming governorship election in Anambra State to apply true democratic principles in selecting their candidates.”
SEAMATA said it has resolved to monitor primary elections of all the political parties to confirm that their processes were not only democratic but transparently free, fair and credible.
“Since traders constitute over 75 per cent of voters in Anambra State and the entire South-East as well, it is evident that they will determine who becomes the Governor of Anambra State through their votes.”
Meanwhile, SEAMATA has sympathized with traders in Timber Market, Nkwo-Nnewi that lost great fortunes and life-long investments in yet another fire disaster that engulfed the entire market recently.
It said, “The association is sorely pained in the frequency of fire incidence in the market which seems to have become a regular occurrence as records show that it happens yearly. Throwing traders in the market and their family members into agony and untold hardships.
“We call on the Government of Anambra State to set-up a panel to investigate the incident with a view to establishing the remote and immediate cause of the frequency of these fire incidences,” just as it appealed to governments at all levels and good-spirited individuals to come to the aid of the affected traders.