From Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja
President Muhammadu Buhari is not in support of the declaration of emergency rule in Anambra State, Governor Willie Obiano has said.
He stated this, yesterday, while briefing State House Correspondents on the outcome of his meeting with the president in his official residence at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
The governor said he reported the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, to the president for suggesting a possible declaration of emergency rule in Anambra State.
Obiano said the president assured him he was only interested in free and fair election in the November 6 governorship poll in the state and cited the example of his (the president’s) numerous attempts to win election until his fourth foray in 2015 as reason for free and fair election.
Obiano described Malami‘s statement as unfortunate and wondered why he has not contemplated the imposition of emergency rule in crisis-torn northern states where there had been lots of killings.
The governor said he would call the AFG to express his thoughts over his state of emergency suggestion in the state. He said apart from recent security crisis, Anambra had remained the most peaceful in the South East . He said that what was happening in Anambra State could not be compared with the situation in the North East where Malami had never pushed for a state of emergency.
“I just finished meeting with the president and I mentioned it and the president didn’t suggest that. The president is firm, he wants a peaceful election in Anambra State. He wants a free and fair election in Anambra State. That is the president for you. But if people in his party are going around making insinuations, using his name to do things, the president clearly told me that he does not support that. Full stop!”
Addressing Malami’s stance, Obiano said: “Well, that’s a very unfortunate comment by the Attorney-General, Malami, Very unfortunate. I also reported that to the president and this is not in the books for the president because he knows that Anambra has been the safest state in Nigeria for seven years plus.
“These invaders from outside Anambra State, from neighbouring towns, we are going to deal with them. We’re already working. There’s nothing. Even to contemplate state of emergency is unfortunate. Look at what is happening in the north; they kill dozens every day. Because less than 15 people were killed in Anambra in two weeks, is that a reason for somebody to call for a state of emergency? That’s a very unfortunate comment by Malami. I will call him to express reservation on those kind of comments. He shouldn’t try that.
“Anambra is doing well, and don’t forget that Malami is on the National Campaign Committee for the APC candidate. So, if that’s their strategy, then they failed already. Come to the ballot box, APGA will win and win hands down. They are trying to see how they can destabilise us. No! APC has no room in Anambra. There’s no party called APC in Anambra. Anambra is APGA. In summary, what I’m saying is what is happening in Anambra and this election that must hold. The crisis and challenges are far from being close to challenges in the North West and in the North East, as the case may be. The guarantee we are given for this election is that this election will hold, we’ll have enough security to back the people and APGA, Prof Chukwuma Soludo will be the next governor of Anambra State.”