If reports available to this newspaper are anything to by, there are indications that some political parties in Imo State may go into a coalition or an alliance similar to what is obtained in the Imo State chapter of the All Progressive Congress, APC.
The Coalition in Imo APC are made up of politicians of diverse political leanings but entrapped in the same party and vehemently opposed to Governor Rochas Okorocha and his desire to have his son in law, Uche Nwosu take over from him in 2019.
One of the huge gains of the Coalition in Imo APC is that they succeeded in taking over the party structure from Imo State Governor. The success of the Coalition in Imo APC has become a focal point for some politicians in the State mainly governorship aspirants who are bent on ensuring that Okorocha does not succeed in his political calculations for 2019.
This newspaper gathered that the idea has been mooted in some circles that an alliance of governorship aspirants will lead to a consensus governorship candidate that will challenge whoever Governor Okorocha’s choice candidate is from the APC or any other political party.
The Coalition or alliance of governorship aspirants, according to those flaunting the idea, will be more or less an assemblage of political like minds reminiscent of the political marriage between the defunct All Peoples Party, APP and the Alliance For Democracy, AD which produced Chief Olu Falae as the joint Presidential candidate of the alliance in 1999.
Falae lost the presidential election to Chief Olusegun Obasanjo of the then Peoples Democratic Party, PDP. But in 2015, a coalition of political parties which subsumed their various political identities gave birth to the governing All Progressive Congress, APC which cut short PDP’s 16 years reign.
With over 36 governorship aspirants and more likey to declare their intention in Imo State, there are concerns that the plurality of aspirants and political leanings of their political parties will make it difficult to compel any governorship aspirant to bury his ambition for “any consensus candidate” having personally put in so much time and resources in carrying out their governorship ambitions.
A political analyst, Mr. Kyrian Eke, a staunch advocate of an alliance for Imo governorship aspirants said the idea is workable but largely depends on the disposition of the governorship aspirants in the race.
“The truth of the matter is I have not seen that candidate that will unseat a powerful incumbent like Rochas Okorocha whom we all know is bent on installing a succesor except God has willed that one of the governorship aspirants among the lot will defeat his choice candidate
“When you look at the political dynamics in Imo State without being biased, you will observe that it is not going to be easy to defeat anybody Okorocha throws his support for. This may sound bitter but it is a fact we cannot ignore. An incumbent Governor is like a bulldozer in a political contest whixh he is very much involved.
“It is an alliance of aspirants and their political parties will change the tide because this will instigate an unprecedented political followership that will trigger a mass movement approach particularly in a State begging for political salvation.
“The alliance will work and it will work for good. In other climes we have seen how alliances have been very fruitful, very decisive in tough political climates such as the one we have in Imo. The APC is the fruit of such alliance and we all saw how they dethroned the PDP from power in 2015.
“To be candid, what we need in Imo State is not a coalition because a coalition will entail political parties subsuming into each other and there is no time for that now because of the encumbrances in the Electoral Act.
“An alliance will be ideal for the State. We have the beat set of governorship aspirants in Imo State. I m impressed with the number because it gives us a broad opportunity to choose among them the best to govern Imo State.
“But if the present crowd of aspirants plunge into the governorship election, the electorate will get confused and may not be able to see who is the best among them and vote for him or her. The aspirants are even choking the political space by running individual campaigns thus confusing the electorate whom they are seeking for their votes.
“The alliance of aspirants is the key. It will do a whole lot of good to the Imo electorate and I suggest It can only come after political parties conclude their governorship primary. It will then be easier to explore the option of an alliance
“In other words to have a consensus candidate and a single candidate that will be backed by others will be ideal “he said.
But this submission has been countered on the basis that the calibre of governorship aspirants in Imo State are so unyielding and none of them will be able to subsume his ambition for the other on the guise of an alliance.
“Our aspirants are unyeilding. Who will step aside for who in the name of an allinace. Our guber aspirants are sellable but they are so self serving” said Okechukwu Ike, an Owerri based political analyst