The dynamics shaping the All Progressive Congress, APC in Imo State is uncertain, but the latest development in the party seems to point to a fierce scramble for the soul of the party in the near future.
Imo APC is fragmented, as powerful forces in the party continue to battle for control. Temporarily, Governor Hope Uzodinma is having the upper hand in controlling the party.
Last week, Marcellinus Nlemigbo, Uzodimma’s ally, was re- appointed as Caretaker Committee Chairman of Imo APC.
The National Executive Committee, NEC of the APC, had dissolved executives of the party from the Zonal, State, LGA, Ward and Polling Units, and directed that Caretaker Committees, take over the running affairs of the party in the 36 states of the federation, pending when Congresses are held. NEC also elongated the lifespan of the Mai Mala Buni led National Caretaker Committee.
Though Nlemigbo holds sway as Chairman of the State in interim capacity, the battle ground will shift to the congresses where other key stakeholders are expected to jostle for the soul of the party.
State Governors of APC extraction are known to have firmer grip of the party in their states and this places Governor Uzodinma in a vintage position to take hold of the APC in the state when the scramble for the soul of the party begins.
However, the Governor may not find it easy, as other notable leaders of the party such as former governor of Imo State, Senator Rochas Okorocha, Senator Ifeanyi Araraume will go for a piece of the pie in the party. In fact, Senator Rochas Okorocha risks losing a return ticket to the Senate as Orlu zone senator, if Uzodimma finally gets total control of the party in the State after the congresses.
Uzodinma and Okorocha are political foes, and part of their squabbles, is the heartbeat of the party in Imo State. The same fate may befall Senator Ifeanyi Araraume, who is one step close to return to the senate for the third time. Araraume is up against Frank Ibezim, Uzodimma’s choice for Okigwe senate seat. He needs to get a slice of the party structure in the State to secure his political future.
Before the unfolding development in the party, the Okorocha backed Dan Nwafor led Exco, insists they are the party executives in the State on the grounds of a subsisting judgement of the Appeal Court, Abuja, which declared Nwafor as authentic State Chairman of the party. But Nwafor and his co travelers seem to be lone voices in the wilderness, as the party leadership had directed that all court matters pertaining to the party be withdrawn.
However, as events unfold in the party in Imo State, there is an impending political war ahead, but if political permutations in the APC ahead of the 2023 presidential election places control of the party in the grip of State Governors, then Uzodinma looks good to take full hold of the APC in Imo State.