- Deputy Speaker Resigns
BY VICTOR OSOWOCHI – Suddenly, the political equation in Imo State is fast changing and balancing out as nine lawmakers have already jumped ship to join the new governor, Senator Hope Uzodinma in the All Progressives Congress (APC).
This is as Deputy Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Okey Onyekanma, has resigned from office and also quit his chairmanship of the House Committee on Rules and Business.
This realignment of political forces is coming about week after the Supreme court sacked of Emeka Ihedioha of the PDP and declared APC’s Uzodinma as duly elected governor of the State.
The Speaker, Hon Chiji Collins, announced latest developments in the House at its plenary on Monday, but did not offer any reason for Onyekanma’s decision to throw in the towel.
However, the the Deputy Speaker’s resignation comes on the heels of nine members from the Action Alliance (AA), the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) defecting to the ruling APC in the state.
Among the lawmakers who have dumped their parties are: Authur Egwim (Ideato North); Obinna Okwara (Nkwerre); Johnson Duru (Ideato South); and Ngozi Obiefule (Isu), all from AA to APC.
Others include Chyna Iwuanyanwu (Nwangele) – PDP; Chidiebere Ogbunikpa (Okigwe) – PDP; Heclus Okorocha (Ohaji/Egbema) – PDP; and Paul Emeziem (Onuimo) – PDP who all moved to APC.
Speaker Chiji, who read their letters of defection at the plenary, said also making the list of defectors to the APC is Ekene Nnodimele (Orsu) from APGA
With the development, PDP has effectively lost its majority status and dominance of the 9th session of Imo State House of Assembly having initially won 13 out of the 27 seats during the March 9, 2019 House of Assembly poll in the State.
Final results released by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) after the supplementary elections had Action Alliance with eight (8) seats and APGA clinching six (6) seats, leaving the then ruling APC with no seat.