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Imo State is a State that was nicknamed the Eastern Heartland when it was created in 1976 after its separation from the Eastern Region. The State has played host to various important factors that shaped have shaped Nigeria since her creation. since its creation. It has birthed one vice-president, several important senators, ministers and other similar political juggernauts.
In all ramifications, the State has cut its teeth when it comes to leadership and other political matters which is why an average observer would wonder why she has been beguiled by terrible leaders since the last decade.
From Ikedi Ohakim who was in power from 2007 after Achike Udenwa and then Senator Rochas Okorocha who succeeded him and ruled for two terms in a tenure that would not be easily forgotten by many Imolites and Nigerians who were around at that time. After Okorocha came Emeka Ihedioha who emerged victorious after one of the most tumultuous elections that the State had seen at the time. His tenure was not to last too long as the current Governor of Imo State Senator Hope Uzodinma ousted him after a very controversial court ruling by the Supreme Court of Nigeria.
These Governors had some upvotes to their tenures and some bad turns too but some of them turned Imo State into a very hellish place for Imolites and other indigenes in the State. Some of these Governors are the most recent Governors of Imo State; Chief Emeka Ihedioha and Governor Hope Uzodinma.
Chief Emeka Ihedioha the erstwhile Governor of the State is one of the reasons why Imo State suffers the lack of progressive development currently bedevilling her today. His ten months tenure which lasted from April 2019 to January 2020 saw some little development in Imo State but his maladministration was more focused on witch-hunting the past Governor of the State, Senator Rochas Okorocha and this made him lose focus on the more important matters that needed attention in the State.
Imo State should have seen some good amount of infrastructural development in those ten months if he actually knew his onions about leadership in the State. His solid backing and support from a majority of Imolites and Ndi-Igbo at large would have ensured that he had a wonderful tenure in Imo State had he channeled his energy and State resources into more meaningful endeavours which were not part of the vendetta he had against Senator Rochas Okorocha.
Asides his mishaps with his gubernatorial position, Emeka Ihedioha would not be described as an astute politician when his history and political background are put into retrospect. After serving in the House of Representatives for a total of twelve years before running for Governorship, there was little or nothing to write home about his political points while at the House. His constituency had little or no developments which showed that he had the characteristics of the average Nigerian politician with greedy and selfish interests.
Governor Hope Uzodinma on the other hand is a particularly worse version of Emeka Ihedioha. His tenure so far in Imo State can be likened to a curse or something close to that. Never has Imo State ever had it this bad when it comes to general leadership. Without mincing words, Governor Hope Uzodinma’s government holds the unenviable record of being one of the worst administrations to ever grace the seat of power in the State. For the avoidance of doubt, Governor Hope Uzodinma is as qualified to be governor of Imo State as any of the former governors or many others in the State. His clueless administration is filled with rubber-stamp administrators who know little or nothing about Governance in Imo State. They are only good at counter-accusations and embezzling State funds as fast as they can.
Governor Hope Uzodinma is nothing short of a dictator who has little or no regards for his wards in Imo State. From terrible State infrastructure, owing of salaries and pensions to the embezzlement of State Internally Generated Revenue, Governor Hope Uzodinma and most of his cronies are rapidly turning Imo State into a personal bank account just like the erstwhile corrupt administration of Owelle Rochas Okorocha did. His government has been nothing different from a maladministration where peddling falsehood has become the order of the day. After making bogus claims that Imo state was owing over 60 billion naira in arrears from 4,800 ghost workers and later positing that his government had resolved the issue, Imo state workers and pensioners are yet to receive their arrears. There are strike actions every week and most workers in the civil service have resigned to their fate.
It is terrible that the crises in the state have degenerated from financial misappropriation to security issues and insecurity in the State. Imo indigenes are being killed daily and all the Governor has done is to pour out blames without making any particular efforts at sorting out issues in the State. This kind of leader does not deserve to be at the State’s helm of affairs anymore. If in his first term where he is supposed to leave a good impression, he has decided to loot the State’s treasury and pay a deaf ear to the insecurity issues in the State then imagine what he would do if he eventually gets his second term bid.
Come 2024, Governor Hope Uzodinma has already started making moves and political alliances to show how he plans to retain the apex seat for himself in the State thus destroying the State even further. He has begun by destroying other opposition parties in the State by luring their staunch members with the use of mouth-watering monetary bribes, plum undeserving positions and political gratifications. He has also gone ahead to monopolise the Judiciary and House of Assembly in Imo State by ousting former office holders and replacing them with those who have sworn an unwavering alliegance to him. To make sure his plans are foolproof, subtly, he is gradually putting in adequate plans to terminate the idea of Gubernatorial zoning politics in Imo State while pushing laws to make sure he has little or no opposition from any quarters in the State. According to them, they have been owed salaries from February to December since Uzodinma assumed office as Governor after Supreme Court sacked Emeka Ihedioha of the PDP who was paying salaries and arrears owed by the APC administration of Rochas Okorocha.
It would be in the best interest of Imolites and Ndi-Igbo at large if they join hands together to make sure that Governor Hope Uzodinma and Emeka Ihedioha are not re-elected in 2024. Imo State has suffered under bad leadership for so long and it is time to take a stand and put an end this phenomenon that has to do with bad leaders who don’t have the citizens at heart. A new face with a better agenda is the best choice now for Imolites. This is the only way that this jinx with bad leadership would be able to be broken once and for all. Bringing back old politicians with the normal agendas would only lead to more sorrow in the State.
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