The actions of the Imo State Governor in Southeast Nigeria, Dr. Rochas Okorocha have caused the governing All Progressives Congress, APC, many setbacks in the past four years.
This was the opinion of the Director General of Voice of Nigeria, who is also an APC leader in the Southeast, Mr. Osita Okechukwu, when he spoke to journalists at the APC National Secretariat in Abuja.
Governor Rochas has been embattled after he lost control of the party in his state during the APC state congress with leaders in his state bringing allegations of impunity against him.
Mr. Okechukwu, who said that the Imo Governor was free to leave the APC, added that without the governor, the party would win in 2019 general election.
According to the VON DG, recent developments during the Imo state congress, which made the governor lose, were part of a grand plan to re-position APC to enable it win elections in the South-east region of the country.
Enough is enough
“At least there are more than 60 political parties now, Okorocha is free to join any of his choice. Though, we are not forcing him to leave, what we are saying is we have taken the leadership out of his hands because he was playing God. He was personalizing power, so the majority of the leadership and membership of the APC in the south-east said ‘thank you’, so far so good, enough is enough.
“So what I am just saying is that he was at liberty leave APC but let nobody anywhere think that the APC will lose because we have retrieved the party from him. Know APC is the winner as a political party. Mr president is going to get more votes, we are going to win more parliamentary seats, more governorship seats without him.”
He added: “In my place, when the bird is dancing on the main road, it means there is a drummer in the bush and I am pointing at the drummer of all that is happening in the South-east. But luckily majority, over 90% of the leadership and membership of the APC in the south East has said enough is enough to our former leader Owelle Rochas Okorocha.”
When asked to explained what he meant by Okorocha was behind vices rocking the party in the South-east, Mr. Okechukwu said: “From day one, he kept us where we are in the APC government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria because in that meeting where he insisted he must run for Presidency, he was virtually aware that there is a convention called zoning, he is not a small boy, he is a brilliant person.
“We thank the people of Imo state, Izunanso and others, the people we recruited, we retrieved from him. They did so well. They have killed a lion,” Okechukwu said.
Meanwhile, one of the leaders of the APC Restoration Coalition in Imo state who opposed governor Okorocha, Dr. Toe Ekechi, said members of APC in the state will be happy if the governor returns to the fold.
“Rochas Okorocha is the governor of Imo state. I think there is joy in heaven when one lost sheep is found.
“We will be most joyous to see our governor Rochas Owelle Okorocha come back to the fold and decide to work with us as a family to ensure the success of APC in 2019 and that is not the taking away the fact that he has the right to make political discussions that suit him but in terms of what we want we wish that we work with together.
“I will not want it to degenerate to that extent, it is not necessarily in the interest of the party. More importantly, it is in his own interest and I think he is a smart governor and won’t want to contemplate leaving APC.”
Dr. Ekechi however, expressed confidence that even if the governor decides to leave the party, “the kind of discipline we have in this coalition, we are more than able, prepared to sustain APC in Imo state.”