By Chukwudi Ikpe
The Catholic Archbishop of Owerri, Most Rev. Anthony Obinna has advised Imolites not to vote for tyrants in the forthcoming general election in the state to avoid what he described as ‘tyranization and enslavement of Imo people’.
He made the appeal at the Day of prayer for peaceful and successful 2019 general election in Imo State, organized by the Catholic Archdiocese of Owerri last weekend.
Archbishop Obinna appealed to Imo electorate to vote for patriotic and modest Imo citizens who “are likely to promote the freedom, joy and unity of Imo people”, adding that, “by their fruits you will know them”.
The prelate who decried the “desperate quest for political office by various political aspirants, also expressed fear that Imo State is now “like a boat in a sea storm, threatened by excessive greed, unhealthy competition, unjust access to money, exploitation of the people’s poverty, sharing of stolen or looted money and resort to violence”.
He therefore urged Imo electorate to vote for servant leaders “who will put Imo people’s needs and welfare in the forefront of attention before attending to their personal and family needs”.
Archbishop Obinna pointed out that serving the public or the people are not easy but a heavy cross to bear, stressing that those who buy their way into it do not mean well for the people.
He encouraged Imo people to vote for patient, fair and peacemaking leaders who truly understand the grave responsibility they carry.
The man of God enjoined Imolites to resist every type of manipulation and intimidation and vote freely for a better future.
He warned politicians and aspirants against any act that will jeopardise the peace of the Imo State and Nigeria in general.
According to Archbishop Obinna “Any candidate relying on money, thuggery or rigging in the forth-coming is deceiving himself. Imo people may be hungrier now because of bad governance nationwide, but they are also smarter, bolder and more conscious of their future. They will eat your money but won’t take your nonsense again”.
The event which took place at Obiri Odenigbo, Maria Assumpta Cathedral Owerri attracted large crowd of Imolites including political aspirants. Over 30 governorship candidates and their deputies were present at the event.
Speaking to Christian Voice at the end of the programme, one of the guber candidates Collins Chidi Ofoegbu commended Archbishop Obinna and the Catholic Archdiocese of Owerri for organizing the programme, describing it as a welcome development.
Ofoegbu who is the governorship candidate of Providence People’s Congress (PPC) said “this is what we expect from the church and church leaders. You can see the spirit; it will go a long way in educating and promoting the unity of the state.
He called on Archbishop Obinna to go beyond this, adding that “faith comes by hearing”.
Ofoegbu promised to revive the local government system and provide good governance for the welfare of Imo people if elected.