Mr Oseloka Obaze, a gubernatorial aspirant in 2017 Anambra election, has said that ideas and merit rather than money would be the major determinant of winners in the election.
Obaze, who is vying for the top job on the platform of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), said this on Monday while addressing newsmen in Awka.
He said he was confident that the electorate in the state were wiser and would not allow moneybags with little or no plans for them to buy their votes.
“Campaign financing here has certainly become an albatross for the qualified but not-so-rich aspirants; we intend to alter that mindset.
“Politicians with deep pockets tend to seek to buy their way into office. However, when it’s all over, the people suffer.
“This time the election and politicking will be issues and candidate-focused; we will appeal to the enlightened self-interest of the people.
“I believe our people are wiser; they will surprisingly be more introspective this time around; those who want good governance and development must find ways to support the most eminently qualified candidates.”
Obaze, who is from Anambra North Senatorial District as the incumbent, said he was not bothered about the endorsement of the governor by the people.
“The so-called Anambra North Peoples Assembly (ANPA) endorsement reflects the views of less than 1,000 people who were consulted in the seven local government areas of the North.
“As I see it, political endorsements are make-belief and make-happy episodic events.
“Ironically, it is somewhat an elitist mindset that does not always reflect the reality on the ground and at the grassroots where the presence of government is not being felt and where the votes will be cast.
“Our view from the North is that we should be given the opportunity to complete our second tenure.
“However, if our South and Central counterparts insist on upending us and ousting the incumbent, then we are obliged to enter the fray and offer credible alternatives.”
He expressed confidence that the election would be free and fair while urging the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to be above board in their responsibilities.
“The notion of rigging, though a reality in our body polity, should not feature prominently or be accorded credibility.
“INEC must consistently pass the litmus test of conducting elections that are sufficiently transparent, credible, free and fair at every juncture.”
According to Obaze, five other candidates, including the governor, all from the North, are in the race for the Government House.