Nze Ray Emeana, immediate past secretary to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Imo State, who recently defected to the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state with other seven executive members of the party, has said the movement was out of their convinction that “the road has closed for PDP in Imo State now.”
He spoke with members of the Correspondents’ Chapel of the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ), Imo State Chapter, at his country home, Akwakuma in the Owerri North Local Government Area
He further said that the PDP, as it stands, this time, has no candidate to challenge the APC’s incumbent Governor, Hope Uzodinma in the November 11, 2023 governorship election.
Speaking under the auspices of a group called “G7,” a group of the executive of PDP that agreed together to defect to the All Progressives Congress.
He further said that it was to brighten the prospects for the emergence of a governor of Owerri zonal extraction after the tenure of Governor Uzodinma in 2027.
The former member of the Imo State House of Assembly in charge of information, due process and inter-parliamentary relations, accused the National Working Committee (NWC) of the PDP of failure to fashion out proper guidelines to move the party forward thereby plunging the party into confusion and anarchy.
“For us to have an Owerri man as a governor in 2027, Governor Uzodinma represents our hope to build a new Imo and the circumstances we found ourselves in PDP actually convinced us that the end of the road has come.
“We have no candidate to confront Governor Hope Uzodinma in the November 11 governorship election and in line with the ‘Imo Chatter of Equity’, Owerri can only produce a governor in 2027 by supporting Governor Hope Uzodinma for the second tenure else he (Uzodinma) will partner with Okigwe zone to take over from him in 2027,” he said .
He also said that he had obtained a copy of the Imo Charter of Equity which favoured Owerri zone to take over power from the incumbent Governor Hope Uzodinma, and commended the governor for his impressive performance especially on road construction, reconstruction and rehabilitation just as he said, “do you do opposition for the sake of doing opposition?”
He also dismissed the insinuations in some quarters that they were induced with the sum of N1.5 billion by Governor Uzodinma to join the APC, insisting that the members of PDP were “suffering from suffocation,” due to the fact that the end of the road had come for them.
Emeana denied nursing any political ambition for now but pleaded with the media to help Governor Hope Uzodinma stem the tide of insecurity in the state.
In a related development, Lemmy Akakem, the Owerri zonal chairman of APC and deputy chairman of the state Council of Elders, had disclosed that critical stakeholders of Owerri zone have endorsed Governor Uzodinma for second tenure.
Akakem, who is also a board member of the 7-man Prerogative of Mercy , Imo State, had also said that appeals had gone to all indigenes of Owerri zone contesting for the coming November 11 gubernatorial election to drop their ambition and support Uzodinma to complete his second tenure. And that those who are still contesting the governorship election against Uzodinma were only out to play the spoiler game.
Akakem said that he had decided not to run for any elective position despite his resources and position in society to pave way for the younger generation to grow, even as he pleaded with the social media to tread cautiously and to partner the state government in its effort to tackle insecurity and other challenges confronting the people.