The Enugu State Council of Traditional Rulers has prayed and presented ‘ofo’, a traditional symbol of authority, to the Governorship Candidate of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Enugu State, Dr Peter Mbah.
The traditional rulers jointly took the action during a consultative meeting of the traditional rulers and Mbah Campaign group on Wednesday in Enugu.
The Chairman of the council, Igwe Lawrence Agubuzu, said that Mbah had demonstrated his “great respect” for the traditional institution in holding a consultative meeting with the highly respected royal fathers.
According to Agubuzu, “by deciding to come and hold this consultative meeting with us, it shows that Mbah recognises that the bedrock of democracy is the people at the grassroots who are subjects of the traditional rulers.
“You will recall that on March 29, 2022 when there was tension in this state arising from the arguments for and against rotation of the office of governor, we assembled here and issued a communique in which we unequivocally stated that it was the turn of Enugu East Senatorial District to produce our governor in next year’s governorship election.
“At that time, all eyes were on the PDP as the ruling party in the state even as we enjoined all political parties to pick their gubernatorial candidates from Enugu East Senatorial Zone.
“The emergence of Hon. Peter Mbah as the Gubernatorial Candidate of PDP is in keeping with the rotational principle advocated in our earlier mentioned communique.”
The chairman also implored the traditional rulers to pray for his protection and wish him success through “our joint presentation of ‘ofo’ to him”.
“As traditional rulers, we must remain absolutely non-partisan in politics while advising our subjects to vote wisely for leaders who would bring peace, security, development and prosperity to our state and country,” Agubuzu added.
Responding, Mbah expressed his profound gratitude to the traditional rulers for the prayers and handling over the collective “ofo’ to him, adding: “the great value I attach to what you have done to me today, cannot be lost by me”.
According to him, the ‘ofo’, which is a symbol of authority, also represent peace and justice to me.
“My virtues will represent and symbolise what you have done today. If, Almighty God, answers our prayers and I become your governor, I will not abandon you.
“What you have done shows what our ancestors in the state want, as you people are close to them and you are the sole custodian of our culture and tradition,” he said.
Mbah also assured the traditional rulers that he would run a people-focused and development-focused administration when elected, adding that he would continue on the trajectory of rural community development, “which Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, had done exceptionally well on”.
“My administration will make Enugu State the preferred destination for business, tourism, industrialisation and technology hub within the Africa sub-region.
“We will also continue to build on the existing peace and security, as Enugu State remains the most peaceful state in the country. It is clear that without peace and security there will be no development and progress.
“So, we will accelerate youths’ employment to ensure peace and security within our communities as well as go ahead with our integrated local communities’ development master-plan to ensure even development of the entire state.
“We will build new infrastructures in our communities such as roads, markets, electricity and water schemes to further open up the state and continue with the great work of our present governor, Chief Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, is doing,” he said.
The PDP candidate also appealed to the traditional rulers to take the message home to their subjects that they had found who would deliver their development message and give them peace and security as well.
The meeting was attended by all traditional rulers in state, while Mbah came with his Deputy, Mr Ifeanyi Ossai, the PDP Campaign Director-General in Enugu State, Chief Ikeje Asogwu and the state’s PDP Chairman, Chief Augustine Nnamani among others.
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