Wednesday, 12 March 2008


The former Governor of Abia State,one of the oil producing states in Nigeria, Mr. Orji Uzor Kalu, who is also the chairman of board of trustees of Progressive Peoples Alliance(PPA), one of the numerous registered Political Parties in Nigeria, believed to have been financed by Mr. Kalu, has moved the governorship battle in the impoverished state to the news Media.

Mr. Orji Uzor Kalu was elected Governor of the state in 1999 and again in 2003 for a second tenure on the ticket of Peoples Democratic Party(PDP), Mr. Kalu however, fell out with the then leader of the Party and President of the country, Rtd. General Olusegun Obasanjo, resulting in Kalu leaving PDP to form PPA in 2006, which he used as a platform to contest for President in the April 2007 general elections.

For the Abia State gubernatorial election, PPA fielded Kalu's erstwhile Chief of Staff, Mr. Theodore Orji against PDP'S Mr. Onyema Ugochukwu.The PPA's candidate was declared winner and the PDP's candidate forwarded a petition to the Abia State governorship election petition tribunal for the nullification of the election. The election of the PPA candidate was eventually nullified and the candidate of the PDP declared winner.The PPA candidate appealed the judgement.

Mr. Orji Uzor Kalu, apprehensive of the lost of the State in the event of the Appeal Court, being the final arbiter in governorship election matters upholding the judgement of the tribunal and its implications on his current corruption trial and his political career generally, have according to sources close to the former Governor, mobilized some news Media Editors with huge sums of money to influence public opinion on the side of his Party's candidate, the objective being to influence the Appeal court judges in favour of the PPA candidate. The Kalu strategists, who are senior Editors in the tabloid published by Kalu, according to sources, believe that if public opinion is in favour of the PPA candidate, the Appeal court judges will be in favour of upholding his election in the interest of peace and stability, a la Yar'Adua vs Atiku and Buhari.

Mr. Kalu is the Publsher of the SUN newspapers, which are very successful publications in Nigeria, this makes him a very influential person amongst local news Media Editors.

It is expected that in the days and weeks preceeding the commencement of hearing of the Appeal, some local news Media will tilt reports on the matter in favour of Mr.Kalu's candidate.