2027 Imo Guber: Uzodinma And Owerri Zone Conundrum

By Henry Ekpe

The incumbent Governor of Imo State, Senator Hope Uzodinma has stirred the hornet nest. Uzodinma has emphatically declared that he will hand over power to an Owerri man while vacating Douglas  House,Owerri in 2027. That is after second term and Eight years in office.

In his declaration, Uzodinma did not say if his successor will be a male or female. He did not say what political party the fellow will emerge from or what part of Owerri. He did not give any condition like his brother, Owelle Rochas Okorocha did in 2019.

Then, Okorocha said he would not hand over power to any person more than fifty years.

However, in these types of affirmations, proclamations and declarations, time, nature and dynamics of life play  various roles. In fact, only God would have the final say.

But should in the end the new “Charter of Equity” guarantees a seamless and peaceful hand-over of Imo Governorship seat among the three political Zones,Uzodinma  would have  cemented eternal peace in the State.

On record, Owerri Zone is the most marginalized among the three Zones in terms of  Governorship Seat.

Orlu would be completing twenty four (24) years on the saddle with Uzodinma’s next four years.

Okigwe Zone had done four years during the Dr Ikedi Ohakim’s era. Owerri was on the seat just for seven months under Rt Hon Emeka Ihedioha.

If Uzodinma succeeds in handing over power to Owerri People in 2027, he would be leaving behind a good precedent that will be cited for the power to move to Okigwe, and then to Orlu in that order.

The Governor would have also used the hand-over to Owerri to banish whatever ill thoughts about his dislodging Owerri Zone from Douglas House, when he spearheaded  Ihedioha’s ouster in Jan 14, 2020.

For  the Charter of Equity to come to fruition depends on the Governor, Senator Hope Uzodinma, and the three Zones. It is not a “One Man Show” Business.

The Governor should realize that since the history of Imo State, no incumbent Governor has succeeded in foisting a preferred candidate on Imo people.

Governor Udenwa tried it, and it did not work.

Okorocha in all his majesty in power could not succeed in planting his Son-in-law, Uche Nwosu as his successor.

For even dreaming that, Imo people, even those around him, made sure his plot failed  by voting massively for Owerri candidate in that election in 2019.

Therefore,despite how honest the Governor may be in his hand over plans, he still may have an open Mind on the issue and would have told not only one person that he/she will take over from him.

This is because, nothing is perfect even as Political Situations change quickly than expected.

Therefore, a crisis may erupt internally whenever Uzodinma’s Allies begin to discover whom he has anointed as his successor among the “Chosen Ones”.

We saw that happen in 2007, when Udenwa ran into confusion and could not pronounce between Rt Hon Ike Ibeh and his Deputy, Engr Ebere Udeagu,who should succeed him.

It got worse  when most of his political  Reliables and  Trusted Trojans, like Nze Ignatius Umunna, the Powerful Secretary to Imo State Government had already thrown their weights behind Senator Ifeanyi Araraume.

In 2019, Okorocha joggled among Sir Jude Ejiogu, Sir George Eche, and others while keeping his real plans to his chest. But in the end he ran out without realizing the Uche Nwosu, gambit.

Therefore, while it could be said that Uzodinma has captured the Imo Political space for now,  whether he will succeed where Gentleman Udenwa and Crafty Okorocha failed will crystalize as time goes on.

It must be noted that Imo citizens are highly sophisticated, and hardly suffer fools easily. Their calmness is usually for a reason, as they can react with the same volume of “docility” in defiance.

Therefore, if the Governor thinks whoever he presents as successor would be swallowed, hook, line and Sinker by Imo Electorate  means he has not studied his citizens enough.

The Imo people may have been gloating over various actions in the State, but Imo populace always know when to say “enough is enough”.

The Governor must use his power to tame his Okigwe  Friends to see why he wants to leave power for Owerri in 2027. This is because Okigwe is highly interested in 2027 Imo Governorship election.

Owerri Zone also must approach their Okigwe brothers on the matter since power is not served on a Plate.

The argument that  Okigwe people pulled more votes for Uzodinma than Owerri, despite their limited population and number of Local Government Areas is already flying about.

A few days ago while receiving Orlu people in Government House who came to pay him a victory visit, the Governor, Senator Hope Uzodinma sounded it clear that no Zone in Imo State can win Imo Governorship Seat without Orlu.

That is a fact. But it is also applicable to other Zones, as no Governor can emerge in Imo State without Okigwe and Owerri.

Therefore, it is  important to prevail it on Orlu Zone to know that Imo State stands on three Legs.

Orlu Zone has had its fair share in Imo Governorship Seat and should give Okigwe and Owerri chance. These Zones have really supported in power.

Orlu  uses its numerical strength and grip on Imo Governorship to manoeuvre  Owerri and Okigwe in the Governorship elections.

In 2027 Orlu may file a candidate in one obscure political party who may shock those alive then.

It happened when Okorocha sprang out from All Progressive Grand Alliance APGA in 2011 and beat a sitting Governor. The results could be recalled  from the archives showing Orlu’s voting pattern in that election that denied Ohakim a second term.

Owerri Zone  Governor Uzodinma is making case for must be serious and do away with internal jealousy, peer group envy, vengeance, greed, sabotage, sale out and gossip in destroying themselves to other parts of the State.

Chief Martin Agbaso was nearly announced the Governor of Imo State in 2007 but it was his brothers from Owerri that jeopardized the opportunity because of not being proactive and supportive.

In 2019,  Owerri Zone massively rallied behind Ihedioha, but yet it was some of his brothers who bought the nail that pierced the opportunity.

Already, over twenty people in APC alone have privately declared interest from Owerri Zone.

But Governor Uzodinma must know that his successor is not cast on Iron to emerge from his party, APC.

Imo people should be allowed to make their choice.

It is now a big challenge to  the Governor who has decided to right this wrong of lopsided Imo Governorship matter.  But he alone cannot do it.

Charter of Equity is working in Abia, Enugu, Anambra and Ebonyi States. Why won’t it work in Imo?

Imo people should support their Governor to realize this Structural power sharing in the State while Owerri Zone should go home and put their house in order.

If the Charter of Equity succeeds Gov Hope Uzodinma will go home a Hero.


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