If the current political climate in Imo State persists till 2023, and if there is no change in status quo, such as the removal of Senator Hope Uzodinma by the Supreme Court that brought him in, through the Philip Umeadi suit, 2023 General Elections in Imo State may see Rt Hon Emeka Ihedioha and Senator Ifeanyi Araraume squaring off against each other, as the candidates of the two major parties in the state, the PDP and APC.
In the PDP, it is without a doubt, certain that Rt Hon Emeka Ihedioha, would be flying the party’s flag into battle in 2023, if he is not returned to power before then, by the same Supreme Court that sacked him.
In the event that he isn’t returned through the courts, Ihedioha’s structure in the party remains stronger than opposition elements that may also be eyeing to become the party’s candidate in 2023.
Wrestling the ticket from Ihedioha, would be next to impossible, as he so far seems to have the upper hand in the affairs of the party in the state.
His general acceptance by the people of Imo State, following his successful seven months reign, is another reason why the party may consider going with a tested and accepted face than a non-tested, who may be rejected by the people.
In the APC, Senator Ifeanyi Araraume, with the backing of powerful elements within the party, have started having an upper hand, even over the sitting governor, Senator Hope Uzodinma.
With his victory at the court, against Uzodinma’s candidate for the Okigwe Senate Bye-election, Frank Ibezim, Araraume is gradually becoming more formidable than the rather infamous administration of Hope Uzodinma, which is still struggling very unsuccessfully to be accepted by Imo people.
If Araraume eventually overcomes the legal hurdles, as Ibezim and his sponsors are expected to head to the Appeal Court and possibly, even Supreme Court, winning the Senate seat against Okewulonu of PDP and Onyirimba of APGA would be an easy task for Araraume, and that positions him for the APC Govenroship ticket in 2023, as he would be enjoying the powerful support of former Govenror Rochas Okorocha.
Araraume had not wanted to contest the Govenroship seat in 2023, and had even extended an olive branch of friendship to Uzodinma, which was rejected.
With the attacks against him by Uzodinma, in a bid to stop him from going to the Senate, Araraume, if he successfully gets to the Senate, may certainly eye the APC Govenroship ticket and with APC struggling for acceptance under Uzodinma in the state, the chances of Araraume taking the ticket from under Hope Uzodinma’s nose grows by the day.
With the way things are going, Imo people may have to choose between Ihedioha of Owerri zone or Araraume of Okigwe Zone, as the zoning formula can only be balanced through that outcome.