Ebenebe is a rural community in Awka North Local Government Area of Anambra state.
Recently the women of this agrarian community were in the news for their stance against corruption during the recent Anambra State Governorship election where they rejected the sum of 5000 Naira offered them by political party agents.
In a viral online video on the 6th of November, the women were seen rejecting the said sum of money.
Corruption Tori, a programme produced by Signature TV, supported by MacArthur Foundation was at Ebenebe to investigate the story of the women and found out that the women who rejected the election bribe were local farmers who depend on their meager farm produce for sustenance and hardly make enough money to feed their families.
Speaking to Corruption Tori, the Women Leader of Ebenebe Community, Lady Favour Nwaora revealed that rejecting the bribe which has put their community on the world map was as a result of a painstaking effort that brought the women from the eight villages of Ebenebe together with the consent of the Traditional Ruler to educate them on the need to vote their conscience and elect a credible leader who will develop their community.
She said their community lacked government infrastructure like hospitals and very poor access road to the community has led to loss of lives.
Fidelia Ilonwa, another indigene of the community told Corruption Tori that the women voted for Soludo because when he came to campaign and saw the suffering of the people, he vowed that if they supported him, he will fix their road and bring other social amenities to the Community.
Other women in the community also gave reasons for their action.
The Traditional Ruler of Ebenebe community, Eze Chris Nnaegbunna regretted that after flagging off the only road to the community in 2007 by Governor Peter Obi’s administration, the road still remains uncompleted, adding that every year, budget was made for the road but those involved were embezzling the money, one of the reasons the women said no to selling their votes this time around.
Eze Chris Nnaegbunna expressed optimism that the next administration will remember his community even after other past governments failed to provide the community with needed infrastructure.
Hardship, hunger, poverty and deprivation was more than enough reason to accept the bribe, yet these women refused to sell their conscience and integrity for a peanut.
With this exemplary conduct, the women of Ebenebe have shown that not every Nigerian is corrupt. they have also shown that poverty may not be the reason behind corruption in Nigeria. As their story continues to be told, it behooves on the Governments and Nigeria to celebrate this uncommon bravery and victory on the anti-corruption fight in Nigeria.