As Anambra state prepares for the November 6th governorship elections, one issue that has been on every concerned citizen's lips is the safety of the citizens and residents of the state.
This is due to the deadly attacks by unknown gunmen in the state who have in the past few months, unleashed mayhem in the state killing and burning down properties of Anambra citizens.
The most recent was the gruesome killing of Dr Chike Akunyili, a well-respected Anambra son and the widower of the late Professor Dora Akunyili.
Residents have not been able to sleep with two eyes closed for a while and with the menace of ESN gunmen who have threatened to unleash mayhem in the state, there has been some iota of doubt concerning the readiness of the electoral body and the state government to properly and safely organize the elections.
This had prompted the attorney general and minister of justice, Abubakar Malami, to announce that the FG had considered declaring a state of emergency in the state in order to safely conduct the elections properly and also, guarantee the safety of voters.
However, the Anambra state commissioner of Information, Don Adinuba has flatly rejected the move referring to it as being outrageous.
Meanwhile, there are 3 issues the state needs to clarify and put into consideration as the citizens prepare to vote in a new government on the 6th of November 2021.
1, The unknown gunmen and IPOB have over the past weeks, successfully declared and enforced a sit at home order in the state and also, harassed innocent citizens who defied the order and came out to continue their trades, How prepared is the state to counter such moves and also, guarantee the safety of voters during the elections seeing that the Gunmen have overtaken a great part of the state.
2 Recently, a member of the House of Representatives, Obinna Chidoka representing Idemili North and Idemili south in the National Assembly made some revelations about the operations of the IPOB and gunmen in the region. He specifically mentioned that the gunmen targeted branded cars of political parties and also, attacked known politicians. With this knowledge, can the Anambra state government truly prove that the state is secured enough for election observers and also, for the Electoral body, INEC to carry election materials from one place to another?
3, Hon Obinna Chidoka also confessed that at the moment, Politicians from the state are scared of going back home as they fear attacks from these gunmen. If the politicians are not on the ground to conduct and mobilize their supporters during the elections, who then will come out to vote? Will there not be another round of a naturally inspired sit-at-home order for Anambra residents?
These are the pressing issues the state has to consider as they are rejecting the option of the federal government to declare a state of emergency just for the duration of the elections.
According to Malami, a declaration of a state of emergency cannot be ruled out where it is established, This can be observed when there is a failure on the part of the state government to ensure the sanctity of security of lives, properties and democratic order.
It is not enough comparing the state to other states in the northeast as Anambra is about conducting a major election and will need all the safety and security back up.
If the state can successfully give resolve these issues and questions, then there will be no need for a state of emergency in the state.
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