Following allegations of oath taking by some Local Government Chairmen of the All Progressive Congress, APC to a governorship aspirant in the party, the intensity of the crisis in the party in Imo State is tearing the party apart.
While some of the LGA chairmen are presently scrambling to re- prove their loyalty to the Governor despite insisting that they never swore an oath to anyone, the hardliners amongst them have stood their grounds including resorting to reporting the matter to the leadership of the party in Abuja.
Governor Rochas Okorocha had last week alleged that some politicians are administering oath on their followers in exchange for their loyalty. At a meeting between the Governor and the chairmen, he was said to have accused the chairmen of the allegation, a situation which led to a disagreement. Some of them were said to have later asked for forgiveness while others stood their grounds lamenting their neglect despite the strategic positions they hold in the party.
The Governor was said to have stormed out of the meeting and he was reported to have banned such politicians from attending functions at Government House, Owerri.
This newspaper was later informed that some of the APC LGA chairmen narrated their ordeal to the intending governorship aspirant who provided logistics for them to head to Abuja at the weekend to express their grouse to some national officers of the party and some Abuja based Imo APC chieftains.
Reports had surfaced last week that 16 of the 27 APC LGA chairmen have dumped the Rescue Mission camp of the Governor citing lack of financial support and assistance which has led to serious starvation and hunger of their families. They also complained that rather preference have been given to some other structures in the Governor’s camp such as Nneoma Women and the Ugwumba movement owned by wife of the governor and his Chief of Staff respectively.
Despite the non swearing of oath to any governorship aspirant, they have insisted that only APC chairmen from the Governor’s geo political zone seem to enjoy all the goodies from the government. They particularly mentioned Luke Ekwueme, APC local Government Chairman of Ideato South LGA and accused the State party Chairman, Hon. Hilarly Eke of playing hanky panky in the matter.
A source in the party said last night that the crisis is a reflection of the lack of confidence the Rescue Mission camp have on the LGA Chairmen.
” Since the camp understood that Senator Ifeanyi Araraume has made serious in- roads into the party, it became difficult to trust any of the officers in the party. The oath taking allegation is the last straw that broke the camel’s back and it is a confirmation that when congress in the party comes, the Governor’s camp will oppose the return of those who are not compliant” the source stated