Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja
Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo’s efforts to resolve the Imo State All Progressive Congress (APC) crisis, after last Saturday’s ward congress election, ended in deadlock, yesterday.
Osinbajo, who met behind closed doors separately with Governor Rochas Okorocha and some political heavyweights including the deputy governor, Prince Eze Madumere, did not succeed in resolving the crisis as both parties held tightly to their positions.
While Okorocha said no congress held last Saturday, and called for a fresh one, Madumere said they were able to convince Osinbajo, with documentary evidence, that the congress, indeed, held.
Osinbajo held the first meeting with political stakeholders led by Madumere, included Senators Ifeanyi Ararume and Osita Izunaso, Benjamin Umajumogu, Theodore Ekechi, among others.
Okorocha, who in company with his son-in-law, Uche Nwosu, who he had endorsed as the APC governorship candidate in the governorship election coming up next year, came nearly an hour later, after the meeting with Madumere camp had commenced.
The meeting is against the backdrop of Okorocha’s meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari, in Daura, Katsina State, last weekend.
Speaking to State House Correspondents at 8:00pm, after the meeting ended, Okorocha said “there will be new congress, there was no congress at all in Imo state and it is very clear that even the supporting documents and videos showed that there was no congress. INEC has confirmed no congress, security agencies have confirmed no congress, the party leadership has confirmed no congress, the party chairman has spoken no congress.
But Ekechi countered Okorocha. He insisted documentary evidence did show that the congress held.
He said: “As you can clearly see, from our faces and demeanour, we just had what we may call a very eventful meeting with the vice president. We are grateful for the opportunity and privilege to tell the other side of the story. I think by our presentations, we have successfully deflated all lies that have been peddled all over the country and within the state.”