David-Chyddy Eleke in Awka
As 2017 draws nearer, the quest by the Anambra State Governor, Chief Willie Obiano, to return for a second term is being threatened by the exit of some of his supporters.
This is following the announcement of the exit of one of the major financier of the party from Idemili axis and a former aspirant to the Idemili North and South Federal constituency seat in the 2015 general election, Theodore Okonkwo, who is leaving APGA with his supporters.
Okonkwo, a former staunch member of the party, was the pillar behind the victory of the APGA in 2013 governorship election in Idemili area, which is known to control the highest number of registered voters in the state.
The former APGA stalwart who ensured victory for Governor Obiano against Dr. Chris Ngige who hails from Idemili axis had during the election been the pillar behind the party’s success in the election that saw Obiano coasting home to victory.
Okonkwo in a press chat to announce his exit from the party during the week said, “It is all about what my people want, and I do not and cannot stand alone, I have a base. I have a structure within Idemili North and South. The voices and choices of these people have been muffled and near servitude.
“We need to re-engineer and reposition. It is a democratic choice. In summary, disenchantment is the core reason for my exiting from the party. There is a feeling of disappointment about the party which I previously respected and admired. There is growing disillusionment with the leadership. It is the disenchantment of a first love gone sour,” he said.
Asked where he is headed, the philanthropist and grassroots politician stated that he is not in a hurry to rush into any other political party, and as such, he wants to take his time to consult and also seek the consent of his people.
“My present focus is on the welfare of my people. In the coming weeks we shall kick-start activities of Dr. Theodore Okonkwo Foundation, a non-political, non-religious organisation. We shall touch lives all over. I will dedicate my time and resources to this.
“Furthermore, I will make my next political platform clear at the appropriate time. Meanwhile I am holding consultations within and outside the state. I have to be circumspect on which political platform I will move to.”
He however added that once the choice is made his people will definitely fare better than from where I was coming from.
A copy of Okonkwo’s letter to the National Chairman of the APGA, Chief Victor Oye, to announce his exit, which was made available to THISDAY stated: “I have finally and irrevocably resolved to leave APGA and pitch my camp elsewhere.”
“As the governorship election in Anambra State approaches, it becomes necessary to reposition my political career and vision. God has been so good to me in all respects.
“This is a painful decision but I have prayerfully weighed the options and I am convinced that this is the right thing for me to do,” Okonkwo said.