Senator Hope Uzodinma, Chairman Senate Committee on Customs and Excise
By Ikechukwu Iweajunwa
Gov. Rochas Okorocha has said that the members and leaders of All Progressives Congress, APC, in Imo are not aware that Sen. Hope Uzodinma has joined the party.
The party in the state heard about the rumour of his entry into the party like any other Nigerian, Okorocha said in a statement issued by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Sam Onwuemeodo, in Owerri on Tuesday.
He said leaders of the party, including state, local government and ward executives as well as National Assembly and State Assembly members met at Imo International Convention Centre, Owerri, to deliberate on issues.
“It is insulting on the party in the state for someone to be talking about joining the party from Abuja.
“The procedure is that you start from your ward to your Local Government and then the State, and the state will inform the Party at the national level that you are now a member”, the governor said.
He said Uzodinma could not come from nowhere to join the party and still believe he could be relevant.
“None of the big names in Imo Politics identified with us when we were forming APC rather they told our people that we were working with Muhammadu Buhari to Islamise the state and Igbo land.
“They called me Alhaji in Government House, They called me Okoro-Hausa, they attacked us harassed us, intimidated us, humiliated us with security agents under the Goodluck Jonathan presidency”, he said.
Okorocha said those who wanted to join the party now through backdoors never believed there could be tomorrow.
He said unless Uzodinma joined APC from the right source, “we will not welcome him to APC in Imo State.’’
Okorocha said that no one should join APC from the window.
“The worker deserves his wages and where you have worked is where you will be paid from.
“ Now, I have to tell you people all that concerns our party, how and where we have to strategise to win the 2019 election.
“Let me remind you all that this journey didn’t start today”, he said.
Uzodinma was among leading members of the Ali Modu Sheriff-led faction of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) who formally defected to APC in Abuja on Thursday.
The defectors included 34 state chairmen of the group and former senators Gbemisola Saraki and Teslim Folarin.
The defectors were led to the APC National Secretariat, Abuja, by Mr Cairo Ojougboh, and were received by the National Chairman of APC, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun.