Tuesday 19 March 2019

Suspension: Crisis Brews As APC Governors Set To Sack Okorocha

There appears to be another round of crisis in the All Progressives Congress (APC) as governors elected on the platform of the party are said to be divided over plans to remove the Imo State governor, Rochas Okorocha, as chairman of their forum.

According to Daily Independent findings, the APC governors, under the aegis of Progressives Governors Forum (PGF), have not been meeting as they ought to and take positions on critical issues since the controversial primaries of the party.

Sources said the situation has been further worsened by the suspension of Okorocha by the National Working Committee (NWC) earlier this month for alleged anti-party activities.

Though Okorocha, whose tenure as Imo State governor will elapse by May 29, is expected to hand over his position as chairman of Progressives Governors Forum to another serving governor, Daily Independent gathered that there is an underground plot to oust him by elements who believe it is morally wrong for Okorocha to preside over the forum while he is currently under suspension by the party’s NWC.

It was gathered that Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State is being considered as his likely replacement.

Fayemi was first sworn in, in 2010. He sought re-election in 2014 but lost to Ayodele Fayose of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). He, however, won the last governorship election in Ekiti.

According to our source, who is one of the loyalists of the governor in the NWC, the plot to remove Okorocha is a calculated attempt by some forces to further humiliate him after suspending him from the party and later denying him his certificate of return for the senatorial election he won.

The source said: “Yes, there are attempts to remove him as chairman of the APC Governors’ Forum. Those behind the plot are claiming that it is unlawful for him to preside over anything that has to do with the APC, having been suspended from the party.

“We have made it clear to them that suspension is different from expulsion. Until he is expelled from the party, the governor remains a bona fide member of the party.

“Besides, the governor has even rejected his suspension, saying the national chairman lacks the power to suspend him as a foundation member of APC.

“They are just trying all they could do to rubbish him before his tenure expires in May. First, they dabbled into the governorship primary of APC in Imo and denied his favoured candidate, Uche Nwosu, the ticket. The party paid dearly for it as PDP reaped from the crisis.

“Later, they claimed he has been suspended from the party. Not done, they connived with INEC to deny him his certificate of return as the duly elected senator for Imo West.

“Now, they are plotting to remove him as chairman of APC Governors’ Forum when he has just less than two months to handover.”

When contacted, Chief Press Secretary to Governor Okorocha, Sam Onwuemeodo, said he was not aware of any plot to remove his principal as the chairman of the APC Governors’ Forum.

He added that the purported suspension of Okorocha by the NWC had not affected his position as he was relating well with his colleagues on a daily basis.

“I have not heard about it. This is my first time of hearing about it. He is presently the chairman of the APC Governors’ Forum and until anything to the contrary happens, he has no problem with the APC governors.

“He has been working well with them and they are on the same page on issues,” he said.

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