Fresh facts have emerged why Governor Hope Uzodimma and his predecessor and one time short-lived former ally, former Governor of the State, now Senator, Rochas Okorocha, are consistently on war path.
The feud between the duo dates back to the 2019 governorship election.
Okorocha,then Governor, wanted his son in law and Chief of Staff, Uche Nwosu, to succeed him.
Uzodimma in collaboration with then Chairman of the APC, Adams Oshiomole, stopped Okorocha’s plan, which led to Uzodinma picking the APC governorship in Imo State, forcing Uche Nwosu to join the Action Alliance, AA.
The duo lost the 2019 guber election to Emeka Ihedioha of the PDP, but the Supreme Court reversed Ihedioha’s victory, and declared Uzodimma the rightful Governor of Imo State on January 15, 2020.
A temporary alliance ensued between Uzodimma and Okorocha alongside other key players in the APC in the State such as Minister of State, Education, Hon.Emeka Nwajiuba, Senator Ifeanyi Araraume and others.
Okorocha and Uzodimma fell out barely two months after they were united by the Supreme Court judgment which ousted Ihedioha.
Barely two months after Uzodimma and Okorocha romance, it crumbled like a pack of cards. The centre could no longer hold. Several issues led to the disagreement.
Okorocha had wanted the reinstatement of his Council Chairmen elected during his reign, abolition of several panel of Inquiry instituted by Ihedioha targeted at his administration, reinstatement of Dan Nwafor as authentic State executives of the All Progressive Congress, APC in the State.
Analysts contend that the underlying factor in Okorocha’s demands are, his presidential ambition in 2023, and possible governorship bid of his son in law, and former Chief of Staff, Uche Nwosu, thus he needs the APC structure in the state in his pocket. Despite Okorocha’s denial that he is backing Nwosu for another guber bid in 2023, there are feelers that Nwosu may plunge into the race in 2024.
Uzodimma will hear none of that. His u- turn from Okorocha is said to be driven by his desire to maintain stronghold of the party in the State and in the South East. He had said that the reason for his rift with Okorocha is because the latter simply refused to see him (Uzodimma) as Governor of the state.
On New year eve, Uzodimma came down hard on his predecessor describing him as a “sinking man”
According to the Governor’s media aide, Modestus Nwankpa, he said Okorocha was only angry that under Uzodinma’s watch, the APC had gained ground in the South-East, a situation which saw the defection of the Ebonyi State Governor, Dave Umahi, to the party.
He said, “Okorocha is a sinking man. He is an internally displaced politician. He is angry that under Governor Hope Uzodinma, the APC is gaining ground in the South-East, including the defection of Governor Dave Umahi to the party.“I am aware that Okorocha wants to leave the APC, and his plan is to destroy the party before he joins another party. But we will not let him have his way.