Vice President Kashim Shettima and the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Alhaji Abdullahi Ganduje, stormed Owerri on Wednesday to flag-off the campaign for Gov. Hope Uzodimma’s re-election bid.
Shettima represented President Bola Tinubu at the occasion.
Addressing the rally, Shettima said Nigerians of Southeast extraction could not afford to play independently in Nigeria’s politics.
He stressed the need to re-elect Uzodimma at the Nov. 11 governorship poll as a hope of bringing the Southeast into the mainstream of national politics.
The vice-president commended Uzodimma for adding value to Imo through his giant strides in infrastructural development and the increase in Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) of the state.
“From a paltry N16 billion annually, he has increased the IGR to more than N30 billion per annum.
“For the purpose of consolidation and continuity, it is important for the people of Imo to rally round Uzodimma and get him re-elected.
“You may not appreciate him but in the fullness of time, you will come to realise how important he is in the politics of Ndigbo,” Shettima said.
He assured Uzodimma of the president’s support and urged Imo people to turn out fully on Nov. 11 to re-elect the governor to enable him to complete his noble projects.
Also addressing the rally, Alhaji Ganduje commended Uzodimma for providing good governance and infrastructural facilities in the areas of education, health, agriculture and security.
He urged the people of Imo to re-elect Uzodimma to ensure continuity.
“It is important because it has been the culture that when a new government comes in, it abandons the projects of the previous government.
“In your own case, we need continuity. Continuity will lead to consolidation, consolidation will lead to sustainability, sustainability will lead to progress and progress will lead to prosperity,” Ganduje said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that governors of Ogun, Benue, Cross River, Lagos, Ebonyi, Sokoto, Yobe and Jigawa states as well as some National Assembly members attended the rally.
Also present were former governors of Imo, Messrs Rochas Okorocha and Ikedi Ohakim and some ministers.
Earlier, Gov. Bassey Otu of Cross River said Imo had benefitted a lot from the Federal Government for being an APC state.
“In order to sustain all these gains and even more, we don’t have any other option than to vote APC’s Uzodimma,’’ Out declared.
On his part, Gov. Dapo Abiodun of Ogun described Uzodimma as the “Hope of the Southeast’’.
According to him, Uzodimma has performed in all sectors – measurable and immeasurable in the areas of roads, health, job creation and youth development.
In his address, Gov. Uzodimma, said he had done a lot to improve on all sectors of the economy and politics of the state since his election in January 2020.
“I will not be contradicted, if I say life has become more meaningful for our people.
“We have rescued our state from the infrastructural decay we met on ground; we have repaired and recognised the health and education sectors,’’ he stated.
Uzodimma commended APC faithful and people of the state for their commitment and support and assured that he would not take their support for granted.
“I will improve on current performance and do better than I have done, and by the grace of God, we will have a new Imo where equity, justice, transparency will be the order of the day.
“We are committed to good governance.
“We cannot do much without the support of the Federal Government because we have seen the need to be part and parcel of national polity.
“Imo is leading the zone to ensure that the Southeast goes to the national level and what is good for other states and zones will also come to the Southeast,’’ he added.
Uzodimma appealed to members of the APC and those who defected from the Labour Party, the Peoples Democratic Party and other political parties to the APC to ensure victory for the APC at the poll.
NAN reports that Shettima who represented President Tinubu to lead other dignitaries to the palace of the chairman of the Council of Imo Traditional Rulers, Eze Emmanuel Okeke, inaugurated roads constructed by Uzodimma. (NAN)