Except in 1999 when one Uche Anya was elected to represent Oji River State Constituency, Uche Ekwe elected to represent Aninri/Awgu/Oji River Federal Constituency, and Rev. Hyde Onuaguluchi, elected to represent Enugu West Senatorial Disttict, all on the platform of the then All Peoples Party (APP), Enugu State has always been consistent with the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), and always voted one hundred percent for the party.
When later Hyde Onuaguluchi was defeated at the tribunal by his PDP challenger, Senator Ben Collins Ndu, while Uche Anya decamped to the PDP and Uche Ekwe never returned to the House of Representatives after his first tenure, the APP in Enugu State died a natural death as a political party to reckon with.
Since then, no other political was able to produce a single lawmaker in Enugu State at any of the three legislative Houses. It has been PDP all over, while in the State House of Assembly, there is no minority party. Everybody is PDP.
As for the Executive branch, it is equally PDP all the way, which means that both the Legislature and the Executive arms of government in the state belong to the same political party.
Some people have been asking, why is the Enugu electorate so naive, or so simple-minded, to always carry all their eggs in one basket?
For us, it is not that the Enugu electorate hate all the other political parties, afterall what is in name?, or that they are intimidated, forced, or bribed to always vote for PDP. On the contrary, our thinking is that the Enugu electorate relate very well with those who lead the PDP in the state, and vice versa, for a number of reasons.
One, when they talk about “Igbo Enwe Eze” (that the Igbo have no King), it does not mean that the Igbo do not recognize the hierarchy of authority, like the elders, their superiors, both in age and social status, those who hold one title or the other, etc., and give them necessary respect and honour. It is because the Igbo do not subscribe to absoluteness, or ascribing divinity to any living human being, worship or adore him.
The Igbo believe in consultations, in dialogue and exchange of ideas. They believe that knowledge and power come from God, which is shared or radiated through human interaction. They also believe that true and authentic knowledge is reached by consultations, or by dialogical encounter.
The Igbo equally believe that those entrusted with leadership position must not execute it with absoluteness. They must rule by consultations, through regular meetings and interactions with their equals and even with some subordinates. This explains the various consultative meetings by the Council of Elders.
This Igbo philosophy, this Igbo worldview, seem to be the guiding principle of the leadership of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Enugu State. Every now and then, you hear them call stakeholders’ meetings of members of the party, those thought to be key members of the party, to ask for their opinions or views on some crucial issues.
This gives the people some air of importance, make them that they are counted and it helps to assuage any feelings of neglect or abandonment. It makes the people believe that their views matter, whether or not such views would be taken into account in the long run, does not matter.
Apart from that, those who so far have held forte in Enugu State on the PDP platform as elected leaders, have not disappointed. They have been able to discharge their responsibilities the best they could, by delivering democracy dividends to the people. As a result, the people very often defer to them, and look up to them for political direction and guidance.
Besides, the Peoples Democratic Party in Enugu State has been consistent in maintaining the unwritten charter of equity, where political power is rotated among its constituent units, from the senatorial, to the district, and down to the ward levels.
Even if you are a billionaire and you want to use your heavy pocket to disrupt the zoning arrangement, the people will not listen to you. They will still vote for whoever is in their cards.
The level of imposition of candidates on the platform of the PDP in the state is very minimal. Those who felt aggrieved one way or the other have always been pacified, such that before the main election, they all will come together to vote the way they have been voting.