From Angela Nkwo-Akpolu, Owerri
After many botched promises, Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State yesterday announced that the local government elections will hold in June even as he said his party, the All Progressive Congress (APC) is unpopular in the South East of Nigeria.
Okorocha made the disclosure at the Sam Mbakwe International Cargo Airport, on arrival from a short Oversea tour.
Okorocha called on the State House of Assembly to immediately perfect the Local Government laws, so elections can hold by June.
Okorocha since assumption of office over six years ago, has repeatedly postponed conducting local government elections, citing encumbrances of the law.
According to him, the ruling party, APC is weak in the South-East saying he will take the necessary steps to “strengthen the party in the zone and also inject life into President Muhammadu Buhari’s Campaign structures in the South-East”.
He said the endorsements given to President Buhari for 2019 in Imo State and that of his Chief of Staff, Chief Uche Nwosu for the Governorship in the State stands, even as he challenged those opposed to the endorsements to present their own aspirants or candidates if they think they have better options.
Okorocha said “Let those criticizing these endorsements present their own aspirants or Candidates if they think or feel that what they have is better than what we have endorsed so that the people can look at all of them and make their choice. You don’t criticize an action you do not have a better option”.
Further, the Governor said “The APC primaries in Imo is going to be very transparent. It is going to be open. The world will be made to watch it. There will be no shortcuts. Anybody who wins the Primary becomes the Candidate of the Party. And the whole noise about Uche Nwosu is because he is the best of all those talking about the governorship in the State at the moment”.
The Governor maintained that he owed nobody any apology even as he insisted that the “Rescue Mission government in the State is on course. I have no apologies endorsing President Buhari for the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and no apologies accepting the endorsements of all the local governments of Imo State for Ugwumba Nwosu”.
According to him, his joy is for a capable hand to succeed him saying “My joy will be to see a capable hand, a leader who will continue from where I stopped. It is obvious that people have misrepresented facts in this part of the world. If democracy is to remain democracy in Imo State and Nigeria there is nothing unconstitutional that we have done in the course of our endorsement”, Okorocha said.