How Gov. Orji, Son, Plot To Impose Ikpeazu As SuccessorFeatured, Latest News, News Friday, April 11th, 2014
As the controversy and uproar continues to rage over the rumored endorsement of one Dr Okezie Ikpeazu as the next governorship candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) by the State Governor, Theodore Orji and his son, Chinedu Orji, facts have emerged on how and the reason why the governor and his family allegedly settled for the man who is currently the deputy general manager, Abia State Environmental Protection Agency (ASEPA), Aba zone.
The revelation is despite the strident denial of Governor Orji and his son, where they called on the people of the state to ignore such rumour and assured that nobody can impose anybody on the people as governor come 2015. The denial was seen as a quick recant, which was sequel to the news-break a fortnight ago indicating that the governor has detailed his Economic Adviser, Chijioke Nwakodo and some members of the state House of Assembly to begin to sell the choice of Ikpeazu as his successor come 2015.
But contrary to the denial, there are strong indications that the governor, his son and his wife were indeed neck deep in the plot and have allegedly advised Ikpeazu to pipe low for now in the face of overwhelming rejection, promising to force him down the throat of Abians during the primaries.
Like a thunderbolt, the matter, which was seen as a slap on the face of the people of the state, raised tension and led to an instantaneous uproar and muted protest among the citizens, elders and stakeholders of the PDP who complained that the state was just coming out from the imposition by then Governor Orji Uzor Kalu and his mother only for the state to be pushed again into the hegemony of father and son, thus forcing the governor and his son to start a flurry of denials in the media.
However, sources close to the obviously rattled Ikpeazu revealed that the young man is crying out that he has been made mockery of by the governor and members of his family even when they (the family), were the ones that actually invited him to tell him of their intention to crown him successor in 2015 on the premise that he (Ikpeazu) would be more submissive to their family than others.
According to the source, Ikpeazu was allegedly invited to Umuahia by the governor’s son also known as ‘Ikuku’ where he was intimated of the family’s decision to endorse him as his father’s successor in 2015.
“He was asked by the junior Orji if he would not want to be governor, and also informed him that the family has looked at all the aspirants and arrived at the conclusion that none of them will be submissive to the family, as a result they (family) resolved to install him governor in 2015 because they believe he will be submissive to the family.
“Ikpeazu responded by asking the junior Orji how he will go about it, when those who are actually aspiring for the position are not so considered, but for him who was not contemplating the position. Ikuku told him not to worry and promised that his father (governor) will invite him in the next few days on the issue.
“Three days after, the personal assistant to the governor, Emeka Enyeazu called Ikpeazu on phone and asked him where he was, and that he should come to Umuahia immediately for a meeting with the governor. Ikpeazu quickly proceeded to the governor’s office in Umuahia for the meeting. At the meeting the governor asked him if his son has intimated him of their decision. He answered in the affirmative, saying “He offered to make me governor”. Then the governor retorted, saying “the thing everybody is struggling for, you now said is an offer’, then posed the question to him, whether he was ready for it to which Ikpeazu said ‘yes he will’ but told the governor that he has no resources to pursue the goal”, he revealed.
Continuing, the source disclosed that “Governor Orji there and then promised Ikpeazu that not only will he triple his allocation for the Aba zone of the environmental sanitation so that he would take money from out of there, but will also introduce six persons that he will meet for additional funding. In the interim he offered to fund his immediate consultation mission to the elders of the party in the state, including the supply of some heads of cow for distribution to the elders starting with Chief Onyenma Ugochukwu. Not done, the governor told Ikpeazu that he would direct his adviser on Economic Matters, Mr. Nwakodo to lead the delegation to the elders first in Abuja.
“The governor scheduled another meeting with Ikpeazu and directed him to come with his wife who works in Umuahia. The meeting held in the governor’s lodge and was turned to a dinner session between the governor and his wife and Ikpeazu and his wife and the governor’s son where the deal was sealed”, the source further revealed.
Well, the project ran into stormy weather, when the delegation not only headed into Abuja, but also announced it with so much fanfare making it look like a coronation of a king for a conquered people. As expected the people in Abia went in uproar, vowing to resist another regime of imposition and besides that, many alleged that the young man in question was a known apologist of former governor Orji Uzor Kalu and his family.
Nonetheless, the ‘campaign team’ ran into trouble waters after allegedly meeting Chief Onyema Ugochukwu in Abuja and was allegedly not welcomed by Senator Ike Nwachukwu, who was said to have questioned the rationale of such un democratic procedure. Nwachukwu was said to have declared that he would not welcome the team.
“The team also met with former President of the Senate, Chief Adolph Wabara who after also expressed his indignation on the move wandering if the undemocratic schemes will not cause disaffection within the PDP in the state, especially in the light of the recent problems besieging the party at the centre by this same similar undemocratic maneuvers. He also allegedly declared that it was an embarrassment to the people.
“Messages were allegedly relayed to the governor, who was said to have denied that he had a hand on the project and even went ahead to pin the blame on his son. That was where the denial game commenced. The team was left with no option, but to cut short the Abuja trip to return to Abia.
“The denial notwithstanding, other stakeholders are not persuaded. For instance, the Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Ude Oko was said to have kicked against the move and deployment of some of his colleagues in the House in the premature campaign team. Oko was said to have been promised the Deputy Governorship position, but was dismayed that the governor and his son chose a former member of the House of Representatives for Arochukwu/Ohafia Federal Constituency, Hon. Uduma (DK) as Ikpeazu’s deputy apparently to buy over Chief Ojo Maduekwe who is currently Nigeria’s ambassador to Canada. Uduma is a protege of Ojo Maduekwe. However, sources confirm that Ojo was not informed of the incipient bribe.
“So many others are protesting that some of the House of Assembly members in the team have been promised various positions ranging from ascending to the House of Representatives and Senate, as against the incumbents and other aspirants”, the source further revealed.
However, some other aspirants ignored the move and rather chose to go ahead with their consultations and declaration of interest warning that the state would no longer slide to the level of such imposition, and that the governor has since denied that he had no hand in what is happening.
Aspirants like, Senator Nkechi Nwaogu went ahead to declare her intention at the state PDP secretariat barely days after the Ikpeazu train, where she was said to have told the party officials, that the office of a governor is not meant for a rookie and somebody whose first major public assignment is to be governor of a state.
The minister of Labour, Emeka Wogu is also going ahead and has even called a meeting to intimate his supporters that nobody has been endorsed by the governor. It is the same for Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe, who called a well attended meeting where he told his supporters that nobody has endorsed anybody. He told the crowed venue that the governor assured him that there will be no such thing.
Perhaps, the turning point in the crisis of confidence now, was the meeting called by former governor Orji Kalu where he poopoohed the Ikpeazu imposition. He was quoted as saying that people were accusing him and his mother of imposing a governor and candidates in the time past, now the governor, his son and wife have now come to impose somebody even barefacedly announcing the person months ahead of elections, which is an insult to the people of the state.
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