At last, it has been confirmed that Governor Okorocha of Imo State has joined the race in regard to who emerges as the Presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress(APC). Before now, the People of Imo State were simply left in the dark as to the plans of Governor Okorocha in the 2015 election. As a matter of fact, the news of Governor Okorocha’s presidential bid has come to NDI IMO with mix feelings of sadness and joy. Those that are celebrating his abandonment? of the Governorship race in preference to ASO ROCK(Presidency) are mostly from the Peoples Democratic Party(PDP) who feel a great sense of relief that a major stumbling block on the path to Imo Government House has been removed. They heave a sigh of relief that the Imo Government House is now within reach, more so, since the PDP lost the governorship on two consecutive elections(i.e. 2007 and 2011) . However, there are those who are in a state of lamentation over Governor Okorocha’s decision to abandon? the governorship for the Presidency. This group is composed of those who are fanatical faithful of Governor Okorocha? Those in this group feel that, in spite of real or perceived shortcomings and imperfections, Governor Okorocha is the Father of Modern Imo State. Although I am not doing any public relations job for Governor Okorocha, those who still believe in his second tenure appear to be in the majority, above all, they come from the group of the masses, hoi Polloi, hewers of wood and drawers of water.
Nonetheless, fact is that , it is too early for anybody to begin to celebrate or engage in lamentation over Governor Okorocha’s 2015 political agenda. Yes, as I write this viewpoint, we are all in a state of confusion in IMO State because of the conflicting opinions on Okorocha 2015 Agenda. There was confusion in Imo State when the All Progressives Congress(APC) released the names of all the governorship candidates of the APC after the governorship primary which took place within the week but nothing was heard about the fate of Imo State . As we read this article, Imo State is the only state in Nigeria where there is no governorship candidate or governorship aspirant in the APC. The matter becomes worrisome because the State governor, Rochas Okorocha, is also the National Chairman of the APC Governors’ Forum. The question in everybody’s lip is “Can Governor Okorocha still revert to the governorship agenda if he fails to win the Presidential primaries of the APC which is scheduled for December, 10th?This question becomes pertinent because a majority of Governor Okorocha’s faithful in Imo State still believe that Governor Okorocha’s presidential bid is a mere ploy to deceive the unwary. His fanatical supporters still tell you that Governor Okorocha is ,in fact, in the Governorship race for a second term. They will tell you that Okorocha has discussed the issue with them in the inner caucus of the party and gave them his word that he is in the presidential race in order to make a case that there is an Igbo nation. According to them, after making GRAGRA and engaging in a power show during the APC presidential primaries, Governor Okorocha would return to pick the governorship ticket for a second term.
Well, those of us who are not insiders in Governor Okorocha’s Administration, simply siddon look as events unfold. We cannot understand the Arithmetic of Okorocha’s hide and seek game of holding onto two slots to himself as if there is no other eligible person in the APC Imo State who can aspire to become governor. In the Imo State APC, there are all kinds of first class brains from the various walks of life. There are medical doctors, professors, PH.ds from virtually every field of learning , engineers, political scientists senior Advocates of Nigeria, media professionals and the like; yet not even one of them is courageous enough to indicate a wish to become governor. Everybody is afraid of Governor Okorocha. This is very pathetic and certainly a blow on democracy .I am ashamed to come from a state where a state government revolves around an individual to the extent that not even one member of the political party(APC) can say “I want to run for Governor of Imo State”. It is despicable and deplorable that democracy has become so bastardized in Imo State that people are said to be free, yet they are everywhere in chains .I Am ashamed of the calibre of politicians in IMO State APC. They are a bunch of cowards, hero worshippers and sycophants who do not have the courage to look the State Governor in the face and call a spade a spade. This is why the state Governor has been taking a lot of very wrong decisions, more so, when the Imo State House of Assembly is an extension of the Government House, a mere rubber stamp legislature.
As we watch events unfold, I thought the Governor would have set up one of his aides as a puppet governorship candidate , at least to guard against any contingencies. Such a pretender- to – the – throne can easily resign and hand over to Emperor Okorocha whenever he returns from his presidential theatricals. This is a modest way of doing these things, more so, since the Independent National Electoral Commission(INEC) has a time schedule for substitution of candidates. What is happening in IMO State APC validates my oft-repeated posers as to whether Imo State is practising a democracy, a Mobocracy, a Plutocracy, a Monarchy or even an Ochlocracy? What Governor Okorocha is doing is incompatible and incongruous with the doctrine of democracy and rule of law. As a media professional who played a critical role in Okorocha’s victory in 2011, I am thoroughly disorientated and frustrated at the way Governor Okorocha has converted Imo State to a one- man riot gang. This is not what we envisaged when we took risks to actualize his governorship agenda in 2011.It’s a betrayal and misplacement of trust.
Since I am not a member of any political party, I may not delve into the areas of criticizing or praising his projects, at least for now. However, suffice it to say that on the face of it , Governor Okorocha appears to have made a unique impact on the Imo State political ambience. In spite of obvious shortcomings and policy somersaults, he appears to have achieved more than the PDP which ruled for 12 years. But it’s not yet time for OWAMBE or Uhuru. What is at stake now is that we are in search of a politician who will rule in accord with democratic tenets.We don’t have one yet. As far as I am concerned, if a Hitler paves the streets of Imo State today with gold, silver and platinum, I will not clap for him. We need a governor who will faithfully comply with the doctrine of “Due Process and Rule of Law”. Since we are told that Governor Okorocha is not serious in his presidential bid, it is pertinent to ask “What is the cost benefit analysis of his presidential candidacy jamboree? What is the opportunity cost of this deliberate chasing after the wind? How much has this Presidential Carnival caused the balance sheet of IMO State PLC?
Finally, in a GSM chat with a top APC Chieftain, he did not mince words in telling me that Governor Okorocha was made the Chairman of APC Governors’ Forum in order to encourage him to fund the APC in the South East Zone. According to the Alhaji, Governor Okorocha has done well on that beat but the Presidential candidate of the APC cannot be given to a politician in a zone where the people are hostile to the APC. Hear him: ”Okorocha has done well for the APC by funding the party in the South East and beyond. Your people in Igbo land don’t like APC because you have refused to change. You are still talking of PDP. Any industrialist will sell his products in the areas that accept and patronize such goods. You cannot build your factory in the midst of people who don’t consume the products you produce. The North and even the West have accepted APC; it is only natural that the Presidential candidate should come from there”. He spoke like a typical Northerner who is often brutal with the truth. After my discussions with this APC chieftain, I have a feeling that if Governor Okorocha clinches the Presidential ticket of APC on December 10th, he will have achieved a feat that could be ranked as the “8th Wonder of the Modern World”. My dear Governor, I wish you good luck in this humongous task of breaking a world record. We are waiting and observing with keen interest.
Finally, I regret to add that in 2011 when we worked for Governor Okorocha to win the Governorship poll, we did not envisage that Governor Okorocha would be hostile to President Jonathan’s second tenure agenda. It is my opinion that Governor Okorocha’s Presidential agenda now is premature and a stab on the back of President Goodluck Ebele Azikiwe Jonathan who played some role in facilitating Okorocha’s governorship victory in 2011.If I were in the position to advise, I would have advised Governor Okorocha to run for Orlu Senate slot now. He will win and stay in the Senate till 2019 when he will be the arrow head of the Igbo Presidential bid .Now, we feel betrayed in the same way Chief Orji Uzor Kalu disappointed Ndigbo in 2007 when he carelessly fluffed a wonderful opportunity to be President of Nigeria. It is a monumental tragedy that Igbo nation of today has become a mob-a group without a leader.
Dear Mgbe, it’d be better if you make some good researches before coming up with something. Insinuating that Rochas uses the State funds for his campaign is a bit rash, harsh, and short sighted. Maybe he has been using the State funds all these years from 1999 to 2011 for same purpose. I’m not saying it is not possible, but rather that you’re not sure and clawing on straws. I think it’s a shame that nobody from Igbo too is challenging Jonathan for that sit. Since 1960 everybody has ruled except the most important tribe in the country, and you cry ‘PEACE’. Such a shame!
@Austyn, if its is not state fund, it is your mother’s money. Wake up Ewu hausa like you
Talk of the 8th wonder of the world, then you should think of the glaring fact that, ‘even as the most industrious ethnic group in the land’, no Igbo has ever ruled the post independent or civil war Nigeria. Even a minority group can boldly law claim to that. And no Igbo has got the manness to challenge Jonathan to the office, and yet you talk of Imo State.
The best you should do is to support the person who has got the courage to answer ‘present’ for Ndi Igbo. Maybe we Igbo are gut-less, really.
Imo state benefited a lot from Okorocha govt, more than 12 years of PDP govt. So if he finds any opportunity to come back and contest for second term, he will win. Why ask him to condescend to contest Orlu senate seat? Is it not to give way for your preferred PDP candidate?