Governorship aspirants for this year's election in Anambra State are to pay N9 million each to the coffers of the state government before putting up any campaign posters, reports Raymond Ozoji.
According to the Anambra State Signage and Advertisement Agency (ANSAA), each individual aspirant will pay N3m for their posters in each of the three senatorial zones, making it N9m per head.
This was made known by the Managing Director of ANSAA, Mr. Jude Emecheta, while speaking with a team of journalists in Awka.
Emecheta who noted that the law did not permit posters in every place, said that the law equally stated that one must pay for the posters. According to him, the agency needed money to clean up the mess generated by such posters after the elections.
The ANSAA boss further disclosed that he had a meeting recently with the Outdoor Advertising Association of Nigeria who came from Lagos State to find out what the agency was doing to ensure that the state was not littered with election posters this year.
The Managing Director said that the association was interested in not only the outdoor adverts but also in ensuring that such election posters and other campaign materials did not deface strategic locations in the state.
He therefore insisted that N3 million must be paid to the state government through ANSAA by aspirants before they could be allowed to put up their campaign posters in any senatorial zone.
He also disclosed that a public enlightenment on the modalities for putting up election posters would commence from February this year to let politicians know that they could not paste election posters on such places as public buildings, electric poles, bridges, road dividers, roundabouts and others, adding that the agency would direct politicians and their supporters on where to paste election materials in the state.
Emecheta said it was a quasi-criminal offence for any person to owe government revenue, stressing that any politician who failed to pay their bills before making campaign posters public, would have the agency to contend with in the court of law.
'So we are asking politicians; “don't say Willie Obiano is pursuing you or APGA is chasing you around”, because you are not APGA,' the ANSAA boss noted, even as he emphasized the need also for politicians to do the needful to avoid prosecution.
He reiterated that politicians who wished to put up billboards must go through registered advertising agencies domiciled in the state, making it clear that no poster or election material of the incumbent governor would be posted without payment.
The ANSAA boss further disclosed that churches had started complying with the law.
The Anambra State Signage and Advertisement Agency, meanwhile, will soon commence enforcement on payment of obituary posters, banners and other materials, while it will not hesitate in taking defaulters to court.