Nine candidates in the forthcoming Anambra governorship election have called for the release of the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu.
This is as they also urged the Federal Government to demilitarise the South East zone in a bid to stem the heightened tension in the area.
The candidates made their position known in a statement jointly signed by Ben Etiaba, the AA candidate; Charles Soludo, APGA; Obinna Uzoh, SDP; Akachukwu Nwankpo, ADC; Onyejegbu Okwudili, APM; Ifeanyi Uba, YPP; Andy Uba, APC; Nnamdi Nnawuo, PRP and Obiora Okonkwo of the ZLP.
A copy of the statement which was made available to our correspondent in Abuja was titled ‘Joint statement by candidates for the Anambra State governorship election holding on November 6, 2021.’
The candidates expressed appreciation for the appeal and concerns raised by the South East council of Traditional Rulers and the representatives of Igbo bishops and archbishops as regards the anxiety arising from the violence in the South East.
In their resolutions, they said, “We the candidates in the forthcoming Anambra State Governorship Election commit unequivocally to non-violence and the maintenance of peace throughout the duration of the election and beyond.
“We urge all our supporters and other stakeholders to commit fully to these ideals and refrain from any act that may imperil the election.
“In order to eschew all acts that may torpedo the forthcoming election, we urge the Federal Government to release Mazi Nnamdi Kanu to the South East Council of Traditional Rulers and the representatives of Igbo archbishops and bishops.
“We urge the Federal Government to take urgent steps to demilitarise the South East zone and stem the heightened tension, skirmishes and endless bloodletting between the security agencies and our youths.”
They also called on IPOB to avoid actions that would hinder the smooth running of elections.
“We urge IPOB not to do anything that would hinder or be seen to be hindering the smooth running of the forthcoming governorship election in Anambra State and to cancel all scheduled sit-at-home orders, as these have already caused untold hardship for our people.
“We call on the Independent National Electoral Commission, the Armed Forces, other security agencies and all stakeholders to discharge their mandates in accordance with law and in a fair and just manner,” the statement added.