Governorship aspirants in the Imo State chapter of the All Progressive Congress, APC will know their next line of action in pursuing their governorship bid as the National Executive of the All Progressive Congress, APC meets today in Abuja.
This newspaper was informed that some governorship aspirants in the party from the State are already in the nation’s capital to either attend the meeting or monitor events. Most of the aspirants slowed down the rate of pursuing their ambition after President Muhammadu Buhari announced his displeasure to the tenure elongation granted the John Oyegun National Working Committee and party executives at all levels.
Series of political events had followed thereafter. A Technical Committee constituted by the party leadership opposed the idea of elongation. The 24 APC Governors did same and also towed the line of President Muhammadu Buhari who had openly rejected the extension.
It was observed that the issue of tenure elongation for the NWC and party executives till June 2019 had emboldened the ambition of some governorship aspirants on the party’s platform in Imo State who saw it as a welcome development to wrestle the party from the grip of Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha.
For the first time, the State Working Committee led by Chief Hilary Eke summoned a stakeholders meeting that was held outside the precincts of Government House, Owerri. Governor Okorocha was absent at the meeting which was attended by Deputy Governor, Eze Madumere, Senator Ifeanyi Araraume, Chief of Staff, Uche Nwosu, Sir Jude Ejiogu, APC National Organizing Secretary, Osita Izunaso and others.
An elongation for Oyegun and co would have hindered Governor Okorocha’s plans to install his son in law as successor as the party leadership in the State had opened the frontiers of the party for other key stakeholders. Okorocha’s men in Imo APC had alleged that the party executives in the State were loyal to one of the governorship aspirants in the State.
It was also gathered that 16 Local Government party chairmen had switched their allegiance to a particular governorship aspirant. There were also reports that Okorocha directed them to recant their loyalty to the said aspirant which they refused. They were later denied car gifts.
If APC NEC eventually ratify Oyegun’s exit, it will open a new battleground in Imo APC as stakeholders will have no option than to struggle for control of the party with Governor Rochas Okorocha who enjoys the appellation as leader of the party in Imo State.