2019: PDP, Ihedioha and Imo State


By FRANCIS OGBONNA
The failure by the Rochas Okorocha led government to leverage the good will it rode to power with in 2011 and deliver the proverbial dividends of democracy to the good people of Imo state, throws the door open for other well meaning political players to step in and grab the reins of power from the incumbent.
However, like most keen political watchers know, wrestling power away from incumbents (even when unpopular) or their stooges, like Uche Nwosu, the Okorocha-anointed replacement have been dubbed by many to be could prove a tough nut to crack.
Asides having the machinery of government, large staff and ‘public funds’ to execute their campaigns with, they also enjoy institutional support e.g. help from interest groups, as well as support from individuals who have benefitted from their reigns and hope to continue enjoying such privileges.
Consequently, to liberate Imo people, commentators say challenging parties must not only have a solid political structure across the state, but as well present a viable candidate as its flagbearer and at the moment only the former ruling party, the PDP is blessed with both factors.
Now that the PDP hold the all aces-that is have a robust political structure that can match or even surpass that of the current governor, it is pertinent that complement this with a not just a bankable but a capable candidate or the people of Imo will continue to suffer with the extension of Okorocha’s government through his son-in-law, Nwosu.
At the moment, the PDP have five governorship aspirants that have made their intensions to take over the ‘Douglas House’ known. They are a former Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt Hon Emeka Ihedioha; former Imo State Governor, Ikedi Ohakim; Senator Athan Achonu; Imo State born Hon.Tony Nwulu who represents Isolo/Oshodi Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives; Former VC of Federal University of Technology, Owerri (FUTO) and state commissioner, Prof. Jude Njoku and Senator representing Owerri zone in the senate, Senator Samuel Anyanwu.
Speculations are also rife that Senator for the Orlu (Imo West) constituency, Hope Uzodinma will soon join the governorship contest.
However, of all these governorship hopefuls, one aspirant stands tall and that is the former Deputy Speaker of the country’s House of Representatives, Rt. Hon Emeka Ihedioha and I’ll urge the PDP to rally around him, cause he is the person primed to sack the present occupier of the seat.
Beneath are the reasons for my submission:
·       No other aspirants, at least within the party have been able to articulate the daunting challenges facing the Imo people and proffer solutions to them one after the other, like Ihedioha has in time past. His understanding of the task ahead and what needs to be done to position the state on the path of productivity again is unrivalled. Talk about capacity, Ihedioha has got it. His experience and pedigree come in handy here.
·       Ihedioha, having played politics (without rancor) at the highest level, know what door to knock on at the national level and how to knock on such doors so as to get them opened to Imo people.
·       His passion also to see his people, especially youths of the heartland state take their place in the scheme of things sets him apart.
·       Ihedioha will not jump ship like most of his contemporaries do. Since he helped found the PDP in 1998, he has remained faithful to the party and its ideals, even at the peak of the Sheriff/Markafi crisis that almost consumed the party. Unlike some other aspirants who stood on the fence, Ihedioha played a key role in the eventual resolution of the crisis. More so, while the scuffle lasted oppositions parties, including the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) have tried to woo him to their sides, understanding what having a politician like him on their sides could help them achieve, but the Rt. Honourable have always scoffed at their advances.
·       Add to this the fact that Chief Emeka Ihedioha has overtime helped stabilize executives in Imo PDP, both presently and in time past. We have seen him overtime replicate in Imo, the peace he and his principal, Rt Hon. Aminu Tambuwal brought to the party and house under their watch. Ihedioha is a bridge-builder, who exudes humility and maturity in all his undertakings.
·       Lastly, Emeka Ihedioha is one politician who hasn’t come under the scrutiny of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) not for once. Little wonder why he could thrive during his campaign with the byword “My Word, My Bond.”
The only reason why the gentleman did not win the last election was the cheap campaign of calumny launched by the incumbent against him while preparations for the 2015 polls lasted, but Nigerians and indeed ‘Imolites’ know better now.
So PDP, what are you waiting for? Behold your man-Rt. Hon Chukwuemeka Ihedioha! Imo, Behold your governor!

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