The political ding dong between Imo State Governor, Senator Hope Uzodinma, and former Governor of the State, Senator Rochas Okorocha, has assumed a newer dimension, as Uzodinma seems to be frantically making moves to consolidate his grip of the ruling All Progressive Congress, APC, in the State.
Part of the moves is to penetrate the political camp of the former Governor, and woo his ex allies in a bid to possibly decimate the political family of the latter.
Members of Okorocha’s camp, had regrouped lately making claims to the leadership of the party in the State.
There has been a cold war between Uzodinma and Okorocha over the soul of the party in the State, as two factions exist in Imo APC, which prompted the National Caretaker Committee of the party, to set up a Reconciliation Panel headed by Jigawa State Governor, Abubakar Badaru.
The Okigwe senate bye election has also renewed fresh hostilities between the two factions in the party. While the Uzodinma backed Nlemigbo Caretaker committee opted for a consensus candidate, the Daniel Nwafor group backed by Okorocha is insisting on Direct Primary.
However on Monday, August 24, 2020, some officials of the out-gone Okorocha government visited Governor Hope Uzodinma, at Government House, Owerri, where they pledged their loyalty to the Governor.
Among those who visited the Governor include former Secretary to the State Government, George Eche, former Speaker, Imo State House of Assembly, Acho Ihim, Chief Hilary Eke, some former Commissioners and other political appointees.
However, this group of ex appointees who visited the Governor on a solidarity visit were former political allies of former Governor Okorocha, now Senator, who had fallen out with him before he exited from office on May 29, 2019.
Recall that Madumere, Eche, Eke, had dumped the camp of Okorocha when the latter continuously pushed the Governorship ambition of his son in law, Uche Nwosu.
Last month, former Deputy Governor of the State, Prince Eze Madumere, who had also parted ways with Okorocha, had led some APC chieftains to pass a vote of confidence on Governor Uzodinma.
Governor Uzodinma seems to “harvesting” the fallout of the rift between Okorocha and his ex allies, by extending a hand of friendship to them, as a deft political move to further consolidate his hold of the party in the State.
Speaking to former appointees in Okorocha’s government who visited him at Government House, Owerri, Uzodinma emphasized that APC members in the State should put the past behind them and focus on politics that takes care of today, yesterday and tomorrow.
“With effective, united, strong and viral APC in Imo State there is the tendency for APC to spread and capture power in the South East by being in power not only in Imo but in the other four States of the Zone,” Governor Uzodimma said.
The former Deputy Governor of Imo State and a Chieftain of the party, Prince Eze Madumere, called for patience on the side of the Government in accommodating all interest. Madumere availed that Imo State belongs to all including the Shared Prosperity Government and as members of the party there is need to show solidarity support in the development of the State.
Earlier, the leader of the team and former Commissioner for Petroleum in Imo State Chief Jones Uzoka, said they came to pledge their unalloyed support to Governor Uzodimma’s administration and to support the Governor to rebuild the party and avoid factionalisation.