Traders Give Obiano 7-day Ultimatum To Cancel Union Election


Traders at Ogbaru Main Market, near Onitsha, Anambra State, have given Gov. Willie Obano, a seven-day ultimatum within which to cancel the result of the market election conducted at Godwin Achebe mini Stadium, Fegge Onitsha on 25 January.

The traders warned that the would embark of a serious protest that will parallyse the state capital, Awka, if the election is not cancelled.

The 302 lines chairmen and secretaries of the market described the election as an unacceptable imposition of candidates on the them.

They said that the purported election was marred by fraud and illegality.

The Chairman of the lines chairmen and secretaries, Chief Chinyelugo Nnamekwu, said , “there was no election but a selection of candidates by the leadership of markets in collaboration with Chief Ndubisi Ochiogu, the so called winner of the election.”

” Out of 203 lines in the market, 199 did not vote as we were disenfranchised and barred from entering the stadium to vote by ASMATA security operatives deployed to disenfranchise us. We were dumped at the entrance gate of the stadium till the end of the election.

“The commissioner for Trade, Commerce, Markets and Wealth Creation, Hon Uchenna Okafor promised us that on the day of the election 120 lines will be accredited to vote with passports but on that day 233 lines were created out of which 199 lines were barred from voting.

”Those that voted were non traders brought with about five buses, ASMATA security operatives and women who could not even identify who they voted for as they were just ordered to queue up and be counted”

“Fake lines with unknown lines chairmen and secretaries were allowed to go in and vote, leaving the genuine lines chairmen and secretaries to their fate outside the stadium. It is an abomination and we can’t accept this.

“This protest is going to be the mother of all protests in the state, we will ground the state if after seven days the Governor did not cancel the result of the election.

“Out of the three chairmanship candidates, two of them, Chief Victor Nwawuzie Akirika and David Obidike, boycotted the election on observing that it was being marred with fraud, illegality with unaccredited people queuing up to vote and traders.

Also reacting, the Secretary of all the lines chairmen and secretaries, Chukwuebuka Uchenna, said that, “I have been in this market for over 30 years but have not seen this type of thing, where non traders will be asked to go and vote on behalf of genuine traders of our market”.

“We have a constitution but our constitution was not followed. The constitution requires the chairman and secretary and two persons from each line but this time they dumped the genuine chairmen and Secretaries and picked the people they feel t will support them to win”

“The commissioner for Trade, Commerce, Markets and Wealth Creation, Hon Uchenna Okafor, told us before the election that 120 lines will be accredited out of the 203 registered lines in the market but on the day of the election 233 lines were created to vote and 199 were did not vote, leaving us the genuine lines chairmen and secretaries outside,” Nnamekwu said.

In a swift reaction, Chief Ndubisi Ochiogu, described traders’ claims as false and unfounded, adding that the election was free, fair and credible.

“My victory was a pay back to me by the traders for my achievements in the market. I brought light, water, security and opened account with the bank on behalf of the traders, which no successive governments have done in the market”.

One dismissed the allegation that he went to each of the market lines and picked two people of his choice and made them chairman and secretary thereby dumping the genuine lines chairmen and Secretaries.


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