Rochas Okorocha, Governor of Imo State, says his suspension and recommended expulsion can’t stand as it has already been taken care of by law.
He also accused Adams Oshiomhole, National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), of working for selfish interests to the detriment of the party, stating that the APC Chairman is only “labouring in vain”.
Earlier on Friday, Okorocha and his Ogun State counterpart, Ibikunle Amosun, were suspended from the APC by the National Working Committee. A recommendation for the duo’s suspension was also made to the National Executive Committee (NEC).
However, a statement issued by Sam Onwuemeodo, Okorocha’s Chief Press Secretary, on the suspension and recommended expulsion, read: “Adams Oshiomhole was determined right from the outset to destroy APC in the Southeast and unknown to party chieftains from the zone who had genuinely supported his chairmanship. He is playing the politics of 2023 in 2019 and in playing it he has thrown caution to the wind.
“In all the Southeast states, there are crises and all arising from the fraudulent manner he conducted the primaries. In 2015, Governor Okorocha had joined the merger that gave birth to APC at the risk of his second tenure and was called all sorts of unprintable names. Yet, he won the governorship election, delivered 24 out of the 27 members of the House of Assembly for APC, two House of Representatives members and one Senator.
“In 2019, Oshiomhole felt that such a man should be treated with disdain. He handed over the governorship ticket of the party to Hope Uzodinma, who has never resigned his membership of the PDP on the floor of the Senate like others did and giving all kinds of flimsy excuses. And if Oshiomhole had meant well for APC and Imo people in particular, would he have given the ticket of the party to a man facing five corruption charges and having travel ban slammed on him, to be the party’s candidate.
“In the February 23, 2019 presidential and National Assembly elections, Governor Okorocha won in ten, out of the twelve Local Government Areas in Orlu zone to emerge winner for Imo West Senatorial District. He also delivered four House of Representatives candidates on the platforms of APC and AA respectively, with one Senate Seat and two House of Representatives Seats outstanding.
“And when the APC members across the nation are still celebrating the success of the party in the presidential and National Assembly elections, Oshiomhole, in his wisdom or lack of it, felt that the best action in the circumstance was to suspend two governors who did well in the election, even when he played safe in 2015 and 2019 in Edo State without any known pressure.
“Again, Oshiomhole coming with the purported expulsion this time, was only acting out of the fear that God in His infinite mercy could give Governor Okorocha a role to play in the Senate, in the overall interest of the nation. The truth is that Oshiomhole is only labouring in vain to play his own part of the deal that warranted his giving out the tickets of the party to non-deserving elements like in the case of Imo.
“Finally, APC especially in the Southeast and in Imo in particular will outlive Oshiomhole. Men like him hardly sleep with their two eyes closed. They always sleep with their eyes open because they have murdered sleep with their actions and inactions. And unfortunately for him the purported expulsion can’t stand because the law has taken care of it even long before now.”