By Desmond Ekwueme
If Rochas Okorocha succeeds in his dwindling, diminishing and declining bid to install his son-inlaw Uche Nwosu as his successor, force his way into the Senate, bulldoze his way to land his wife in the House of Representatives and gatecrashes five others believed to be his relatives into the State House of Assembly respectively come 2019, he would have successfully completed the building of his political dynasty which will rule Imo State for years to come.
He actually started the foundation of his dynasty in 2011 when he emerged governor by defeating the incumbent governor then, Ikedi Ohakim. Slowly but perhaps carelessly Okorocha erred in every step of the way. He moved the impeachment of Jude Agbaso his deputy and bossom friend who is from Owerri zone (Imo Central). This did not augur well with Owerri people. But not even the emergence of another son of the zone in Prince Eze Madumere would stop Okorocha’s vaulting ambition from manifesting. Madumere went the way of Agbaso just like their brother Jude Ejiogu.
He needed to wield his authority and influence to test his popularity and power. He appointed his son-inlaw Uche Nwosu as commissioner. In fact, he was a two-time commissioner for Works and latter Special Duties before eventually offering him the powerful position Chief of Staff.
Findings reveal that while Nwosu was commissioner, he was actually under test cum probation as his father-in-law, boss cum godfather needed to try him to see his loyalty and capabilities before preparing grounds for him to succeed him. While Nwosu mounted the saddle of running the day to day affairs of Douglas House, he severally had confrontations in the line of his duty with the deputy governor, Madumere.
The latter felt that too much powers were given to the COS who was somehow undermining the office and responsibilities of the deputy governor. Madumere sensed foul play and decided to make known to his boss his intention to succeed him come 2019. It was at this point that the lid was blown open. Initially, Okorocha assured all that he won’t anoint any candidate nor get involved in the process of chosing, selecting or picking his successor. At some points he even openly supported his deputy saying that he has been very submissive, loyal and helpful to his administration therfore, could govern the state after him.
But as the primaries drew nearer Okorocha struck like lightening. The lion roared. He made public his secret agenda to keep power within his family circle as a guaranty against political wolves that may strike to hijack power from him in the state. Madumere was thereby impeached with huge allegation of fraud in the United States slammed on him. This was very similar to the tactics used earlier to impeach Agbaso as deputy governor.
By this time the real Okorocha was already manifesting as major voices within his party and government were being silenced. Reports say, the decision to appoint his younger sister Commissioner for Happiness was also part of the whole plot to build a dynasty and government locked down within and around his family.
While another of his inlaws Chuks Ololo attempted to contest the governorship position with Nwosu it created huge controversy within his family. Ololo refused to step down for Nwosu despite several appeals by Okorocha and his sister, Ololo’s wife. It was at this point that Okorocha decided that to avoid confusion in future his immediate family must participate more in the incoming government. He picked his wife the First Lady to go to the House of Representatives.
Similarly he shared other key positions. This did not go down well with Imolites especially the voices within his administration who felt the governor was trying to enslave the people by pocketing government and governance.
The fact that the people were not even experiencing any impact of his administration coupled with the unpopular agenda of erecting statues of some African leaders in the state capital which made the state a reference point of ridicule angered the people who were led by the coalition group made up of top five chieftains of his party the APC.
This was the beginning of the seeming crash of Okorocha’s political dynasty. He tried to fight back the coalition group who had plans to stop him and his plans of pocketing the state. The group lost the Local Council elections to him and also the National Convention where Okorocha’s men were elected into key positions but the coalition group had Plan B which was at the governorship primaries.
In Senator Hope Uzodinma a former chieftain of the PDP who has since defected to the APC, Okorocha and his son-inlaw met their waterloo so to say. It was a battle of wit which eventually went the way of Uzodinma going by the decision of the Adams Oshiomhole led NWC.
Okorocha’s political dynasty is now under threat. He has also threatened to quit the APC vowing that Nwosu will win the governorship election in Imo irrespective of the party’s flag he flies. The battleline has been drawn as Imolites await the 2019 election.
Their body language seems they are not satisfied with the cold war in APC and they appear fed up with the family style of Okorocha’s government. They could be looking elsewhere for a governor outside Nwosu. If this happens Okorocha’s dynasty may have been docked and dwarfed. The calabash may have been broken.