From Stanley Uzoaru, Owerri
Traditional rulers in Imo State and leaders from Owerri, Okigwe and Orlu have called on Governor Hope Uzodinma to run for a second term in 2023.
The stakeholders, who were reacting to a recent clamour for the governorship of the state to return to the Owerri zone at a recent event tagged “Egbu declaration”, noted that those behind the call are not being fair to the people of the state and the charter of equity already laid down.
Addressing the media on behalf of the leaders from Okigwe, Owerri and Orlu, the National Chairman of the Orlu Political Consultative Assembly (OPOCA), Chief Rex Anunobi, noted that equity demands that the incumbent governor from Orlu zone should run for a second term; and until then would Owerri and Okigwe have their turn.
The stakeholders have also slammed former Governor Emeka Ihedioha, who suggested that he would be running for election in 2023, at the Egbu declaration, describing his aspiration as selfish.
On claims of equity by Ihedioha as a basis to returning to power in 2023, Anunobi said: ‘It is equally laughable and ironical too that Ihedioha, who has recently hinged his desperation and “it must be me” attitude on equity, is the same person that seized power at the detriment of the people of Ngor Okpala.
‘Where was “Equity” when he seized power and sat tight for 12 years thus denying the people of Ngor-Okpala opportunities of representation in the Federal Constituency. Is “Equity” a commodity for just one man, is “Equity only meant for Ihedioha, is Ihedioha the only man qualified to become a governor in Owerri zone,’ Anunobi queried.
Speaking on behalf of the royal institution in the state, Eze Akujuobi Osuagwu, who is the Chairman of the Owerri Council of Traditional Rulers, asserted that monarchs in the state have resolved to allow Governor Uzodinma to run for a second term if he desires while.
Osuagwu noted that, although as traditional rulers they are not supposed to be partisan, “what is worth doing is worth doing well”, insisting that the governor has done well and has to be encouraged to run for reelection to solidify his projects.
Leaders from all the zones were represented by Charles Amadi, National President, Owerri Zone Political Leaders Forum (OZOPOLF) and Matthew Omegara, National President, Okigwe Political Assembly (OPA). Others present were Eze Thomas Obiefule for Orlu zone and Eze Oliver Enwerem for Okigwe.