Traders In Onitsha Market Pelts Peter Obi, Obiano With Sachet Water Bags, Foils Their Campaign
Traders in Onitsha Main Market today resisted the order by the state government to close the markets in order to welcome Mr. Willie Obiano, the embattled candidate of APGA now facing two court cases for double registration.
The confusion which followed the event marred the proposed visit at 9am today of the APGA candidate in company Chief Martins Joe-Martins Uzodike, his Campaign Manager who also doubles as the State Commissioner for Information, Tourism & Culture.
The traders showed visible anger as they marched through the environment carrying placards.
They were soon joined buy another contingent marching from Ose Okwodu with brooms and in no time bystanders a, youngsters and Okada riders joined them chanting songs in favor of the APC candidate in the election, Senator Chris Ngige.
The arrival of the Governor Obi and Obiano did not deter the protesting traders. Rather the governor’s entourage was pelted with sachet water bags, prompting a quick retreat to Whitehouse office of the Onitsha Amalgamated Traders Association (OMATA), where the donation of N1m announced by the governor was shouted down with many booing his entourage.
As at the time of filing this report, agents of the Governor Obi are wooing the traders individually through their leaders to come to Onitsha North stadium to be addressed, but the resistance appear.
One of the traders explained: ‘ We received an order by the government saying that we should not do business today, of which (sic) we feel that it is not okay’ Mr. Andrew Agbapu, Fancy Line said ‘ Every time they will close our business without considering our gain’.
Another trader in home appliance line, Mr. Fred Nebedum said;’ It is not by force to support a candidate. The worst is that he should come and say what he wants to do and other will also come. But it does not mean we will not do business for that?‘
Mr. Phil Onyia, of Abada line, Williams Street was blunter ‘The truth is that the government is forcing an unpopular candidate; someone we do not want to spoil our business and what is why we have this problem. We want Ngige, although we do not say anybody else should not campaign, but they should stop playing with our stomach for politics.’ Onyian fumed.
Governor Peter Obi was reported as saying that political parties will not be allowed to campaign in the markets, a policy sharply criticized by opposing political parties as unlawful.
The latest development has therefore caught the other political parties by surprise.
Luke Udeh, a chieftain of Labor party in Onitsha said ‘Obi can never excel on the path of keeping to his own rules. He is a bully‘.
Chief Amaechi Obidike, of APC did not pick his calls. But Jude Nkputa of PDP said, since Gov obi has decided to campaign in the market everyone will now do so.
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