By Chidi Nkwopara & Chinonso Alozie
OWERRI—The Hilary Eke-led Imo state chapter of the All Progressives Congress, APC, executive has been forced out of the party secretariat by forces loyal to Governor Rochas Okorocha.
Okorocha’s parallel executive headed by Chris Oguoma, occupied the office of the party located along Works Layout in the state yesterday.
This was even as the governor and his camp did not conduct a parallel ward, local government and state congresses as they had hoped the national leadership of the party would cancel the congresses and order fresh ones.
Reacting to the development yesterday, the APC, Publicity Secretary, Mr Nwabueze Oguchienti, said that “it would be a waste of time for them to say that they have elected executives after we must have concluded our party congresses.”
However, Oguoma insisted that he was the elected chairman of APC in the state, after Dr Hillary Eke, who emerged after last week’s state congress was suspended by the party.
Oguchienti said: “The congresses of the party is purely an internal affair the NWC put the guidelines and if you fail to follow the rules, then you want to leave the party. You must be dreaming when you think that you can be a party chairman based on appointment.”
But Oguoma said, “On May 10, 2018, there was a vote of no confidence on Hilary Eke and by that suspension, he ceased to be the state chairman of the party. So if anybody says it is by appointment, that person is trying to be mischievous. So the organ of the party elected me as their chairman.”
APC stakeholders worry over growing economic hardship in Imo
Meanwhile, the Stakeholders Forum of All Progressives Congress, APC, Imo State, has said it is worried by the growing economic hardship and burden inflicted on the people of Imo State by the outgoing administration of Rochas Okorocha.
The group also said it was “disturbed by the unconscionable rate at which the commonwealth of Imo people is being dissipated by the conversion of government assets for personal gains, and settlement of family members and cronies alike,with no end in sight.”
In a statement signed by the chairman and secretary of the group, Chief Okey Ikoro and Kingsley Ononuju respectively, the APC chieftains further said: “In the discharge of our moral obligation as the conscience of the people, we have resolved to use every legal means to halt this wanton and unwarranted depletion of our resources by the outgoing administration in our state.
“We must preserve the state’s commonwealth for the purposeful use, deployment, enjoyment and overall benefit of the good people of Imo State.
“No individual, group, institution, body or legal entity, should negotiate or engage in any form of transaction with the present state government for the transfer of any interest in land, building, fixed or floating assets, belonging to Imo State, whatsoever, either in part or in whole.”
Palpable fear grips Okorocha’s political appointees
Palpable fear has also gripped political appointees in Imo State, following what some pundits called “imminent sacking of suspected loyalists of the allied forces within the Governor Rochas Okorocha administration.”
Already, a number of political appointees have lost their jobs as a result of alleged loss of confidence and deep relationship with those opposed to the governor’s succession plan, since the congresses of theAPC started May 5, 2018.
A credible source within the administration confided in Vanguard yesterday that “names of political appointees, whose loyalty to the governor is in question, are being compiled”, stressing that “we are now moving, working and talking with extreme caution for fear of being found on the wrong side.”
Comments expressed here do not reflect the opinions of Vanguard newspapers or any employee thereof.