From Angela Nkwo-Akpolu, Owerri
Apparently irked by the impeachment process of the Deputy Governor of Imo State, Prince Eze Madumere, immediate past Deputy Speaker, Chief Emeka Ihedioha has raised an alarm over the move even as he described it as a colossal assault on democracy.
Ihedioha made the disclosure in a statement signed by his spokesman, Chibuike Onyeukwu in Owerri, the Imo State capital.
According to him, the Deputy Governor’s obvious offence is his legitimate aspiration to run for the highest political office in the state, contrary to Governor Rochas Okorocha’s preference of his in-law, Mr Uche Nwosu, saying “this unfortunate development is particularly alarming and indeed worrisome to all advocates and defenders of democracy and rule of law in Imo and the nation at large”.
Ihedioha said it is regrettable that the State is on the verge of having a third Deputy Governor within the eight years administration of Governor Okorocha because the Governor has once again demonstrated “his clear intolerance to alternative political stance and viewpoint. As it is typical of his administration, he has once more dishonorably pushed Imo in the news for the wrong reasons, thus, provoking salient questions, bordering on the institutionalised misrule and impunities that have enveloped the state in the past seven years of his administration”.
Further, he said “regrettably, this episode is coming at a time, one would have thought that Governor Rochas Okorocha would, at the twilight of his failed administration, be pre-occupied more on how to salvage the near ruinous state he is set to leave behind without any legacy to show than to be engaging in duel against perceived political enemies”.
The 2015 gubernatorial candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) said Okorocha’s penchant for intimidation and betrayal is evidently legendary, “evidenced in the manner, he supervised the impeachment of his former Deputy, Chief Jude Agbaso, whose family provided the platform with which he attained the position of Chief Executive of the state in 2011. It is also the same inclination that accounts for his desperation to remove Prince Madumere who has been known to be his greatest loyalist for over two decades”.
Ihedioha said by the move, it is a colossal assault on every known democratic tenets, including freedom of choice, freedom of association and the right of an individual to aspire to any political position in the land.
Ihedioha warned that if Governor Okorocha succeeds in the impeachment of Prince Madumere, it would inappropriately amount to denting the political records of two illustrious sons of Imo within his two-term in office.
The former lawmaker lamented that the Governor has once more dishonourably pushed Imo State in the news for the wrong reasons, thus, provoking salient questions, bordering on the institutionalized misrule and impunities that have enveloped the state in the past seven years of his administration.
Ihedioha warned Governor Okorocha, to stop the open display of gross abuse of power and treatment of Imolites as “conquered people who must be humiliated and subjugated. This is manifest in the planned impeachment of Prince Madumere, which in all intents and purposes is irresponsible, undemocratic, illegitimate, irrational, egocentric and therefore, should be reconsidered forthwith in the best interest of the state and sustenance of democracy”.
Further, he reiterated his avowed solidarity to the people of Imo State towards rebuilding the state and advised the Governor to pay more attention to the issues of governance, to save the state from imminent total collapse.