Friday, February 12, 2021 10:09 pm
Okafor Ofiebor/Port Harcourt
Governor Nyesom Wike has shocked many bigwigs of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP with the release of names of candidates for the Rivers April 2021 local government election,
In the list, a former leader and three times member of the Rivers State House Assembly, Dr. Chidi Lloyd, was chosen as the chairmanship candidate for Emuoha Local Government.
The emergence of Lloyd who was until recently, a chieftain of All Progressives Congress, APC, and an ally of Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, the Transportation Minister was one of the shocking outcomes in the list of candidates for Rivers LG election released yesterday.
Llyod will contest to replace Tom Aliezi, the incumbent PDP Chairman of Emohua local Government council.
Aliezi was allegedly impeached by his councillors earlier yesterday.
The emergence of Lloyd as Chairmanship candidate of his local government has sent tongues wagging in political circles in state.
Some political analysts have argued that joining the chairmanship race is belittling for the former leader of Rivers House of Assembly.
It was, however, believed that Lloyd and the other candidates were carefully chosen by Wike as a way of positioning his trusted allies in strategic positions, especially at the grassroots ahead of the 2023 election.
While the former loyalist of Amaechi has now emerged as a chairman candidate few months after he dumped his former party and declared his loyalty to Wike, other top PDP big shots’ candidates failed to secure the chairmanship ticket.
Top politicians whose preferred candidates could not surprisingly secure spot on the LGA election ballot include Prince Uche Secondus, the National Chairman of PDP, and Tele Ikuru, his cousin who is also the immediate past deputy governor of Rivers.
Their preferred candidate who is the incumbent chairman for Andoni local government, Paul Lawrence, lost out to Erastus Awortu.
Desmond Akawor, the State Chairman of PDP (his chairmanship is now subject of litigation), could not influence a second term ticket for his loyalist, Gerald Oforji, the incumbent Chairman of Oyigbo Local Government.
Another upset was the inability of Samuel Nwanosike, the incumbent Chairman of Ikwerre local government Council to obtain a second term ticket against the wishes of former Governor Celestine Omehia.
Besides being a trusted ally of Wike, Nwanosike was also said to have performed relatively well when compared with his counterparts in other councils, hence the favourable disposition of the Governor to his return as chairman of the council.
The incumbent chairman of Khana LGA Lahteh Loolo also failed to clinch second term ticket, as Commissioner for Special Duties, Thomas Bariere got the nod to contest to replace him.
In Wike’s Obio-Akpor local government Council, the incumbent Chairman, Ben Abel Ekeh lost the ticket to George Ariolu, a lawyer.
For Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni Local Government Area Chairman, Ifeanyi Odili failed to secure second tenure ticket. The ticket went to Vincent Job Nwaobakata from Omoku.
Hon. Confidence Dekoo will also replace Hon. Paul Kobani on the ballot as PDP’s chairmanship candidate for Gokana.
In the same vein, Hon. Okpe Friday will replace Jacobson Nbina on the ticket as the chairmanship candidate of Tai LGA.
However, Hope Ikiriko, the incumbent Chairman of Ahoada West received green light to return for second tenure.
The return of Ikiriko to the Council and who was a three-time member of the House of Assembly is a surprise to many because he had been having a running battle with people of his council area over allegation of nonperformance.