From Stanley Uzoaru,Owerri
Even as the deadline for the registration and revalidation of new members of the All Progressives Congress(APC) in Imo State is almost coming to an end, the State executive of the party led by Marcellinus Nlemigbo has boasted that APC can win election without the former governor of the State,Rochas Okorocha being a member of the party.
Recalled that the exercise has been on for several weeks before it was extended in few States like Imo, owing to party leadership disputes.
Answering questions from newsmen on Tuesday on what would be the fate of Okorocha and his loyalists if they fail to meet the deadline prescribed by the party, State chairman of the party,Nlemigbo recognised by the State governor,Hope Uzodimma said there may be no other option than the former governor and his men sent away from the party.
His words “after being a State governor ,what are you asking of the structure for,the party is open for him to come and register, when our President,Muhammadu Buhari went to his unit to register, he did not demand for structure or the party chairman to be removed.
” Same goes to our governor, Hope Uzodimma,did he ask for the structure of the party, I’m the chairman recognised today and Okorocha does not want to recognise that,he wants to control the structure of the party but he has forgotten that when he sponsored his son -in -law, Uche Nwosu who was in AA to run election,he declared that there was no candidate of APC in Imo.
“So if AA had won the election that time , would he still be claiming to be member of APC. The interesting thing is that without Okorocha,APC can win election in Imo especially now that a lot of people are joining us , we have a lot of opportunity to win.
Speaking on efforts,the party has made to have Okorocha revalidate his membership, Nlemigbo said ” it is very easy for him to register in his booth or unit, the governor and even myself have volunteered to come to his unit to observe,we don’t know why they are finding it difficult,they can even go to their council headquarters if they want.”
” If I were Okorocha, I will quietly go back to my house or AA,this registration was extended because of people like him,I’m afraid if the deadline expires ,they can no longer be members of the party. Nlemigbo said.
But Daniel Nwafor who is still claiming to be chairman of the party in the State in a swift reaction expressed confidence that at last Okorocha will still be a member of the party even as he contended that the registration exercise must be done through his own executive.
He disclosed that already they are having discussions with the National executives of the party and part of their deliberation he said was asking the party leadership to do the right thing.
“It’s our party and we are not running away from it,what we are only asking APC to do is to do the right thing and what is the right thing, they should conduct the exercise through legally recognised executive of the party in the State. Nwafor said.