APC suspends Okorocha for anti-party activities

Chairman of Progressives Governors Forum, Governor Rochas Okorocha speaking with reporters after a meeting of APC governors with President Muhammadu Buhari in the State House Presidential Villa
Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha

The All Progressives Congress (APC) has suspended the Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha, for anti-party activities.

The Imo State chapter of the party gave the suspension order on Thursday, after a report from the disciplinary committee set up to investigate allegations of anti-party activities against the governor.

The disciplinary committee, headed by Matthew Omegara, had earlier this week, summoned the governor and six others to appear before the committee for anti-party activities and for allegedly bringing the party to disrepute and ridicule.

The party, at the national level, following the activities of the governor and state executives, dissolved the state executives, noting that they could not be trusted to work for the good of the party. It thereafter, set up a caretaker committee.

The chairman of the APC Imo State caretaker committee, M.O. Nlemigbo, said the anti-party activities of the governor are; sponsorship of a rival political party, Action Alliance (AA), in Imo State and its governorship candidate, Uche Nwosu; as well as open denunciation of APC and its governorship candidate, Hope Uzodimma, in the state.

The caretaker committee said its action is in line with Article 21 (B) I-VI of the APC constitution as amended in 2014.

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The caretaker committee reportedly wrote to the APC national chairman, Adams Oshiomhole, informing him of the suspension and calling for the governor’s expulsion.

An aide to Mr Oshiomhole, Simon Egbebulem, however said he is not aware if his principal received the letter.

“I don’t know if he has received anything of such, you know we have been on campaign unless if we will find out from the secretariat,” he said.

Speaking to PREMIUM TIMES over the phone Friday morning, the spokesperson of the governor, Sam Onwuemeodo, angrily questioned the authority of the state chapter shouting “who is the chairman of the Imo State chapter?”

The national publicity secretary of the party, Lanre Issa-Onilu, when reached by PREMIUM TIMES, suggested the suspension could be valid.

“I’m abroad now but will get an update and revert to you. However, just to clear a wrong impression: there’s no special status for governors in our party constitution. Every member goes through the same disciplinary procedures from ward executives up to any level. Your ward exco can suspend you.

“It is only if you are a national officer of the party that such suspension requires the ratification by the NWC,” he said.

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Despite the suspension, however, Mr Okorocha remains a senatorial candidate of the APC in Imo.

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