Imo State Governor Hope Uzodinma and the National Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Sen. Samuel Anyanwu are losing sleep over the soaring popularity of former Imo Governor, Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha.
This is because at every turn in Imo State, the consensus to return Rt. Hon. Ihedioha, the peoples’ governor back to power come 2023 has become a consolidated creed that cuts across all divides in Imo State.
The reverberating ovation that greet Ihedioha at every event in Imo State has continued to upstage and dim the hope of other political gladiators especially, Gov. Uzodinma and Sen. Anyanwu.
The latest being the occasion of a thanksgiving service to commemorate the 80th birthday of foremost business mogul and politician, Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, at the Cathedral of Transfiguration of our Lord, CATOL, Owerri, Imo State.
The Cathedral was filled to the brim by worshippers, families, friends, political and business allies of the Chief Iwuanyanwu who came from various parts of the country to thank God for the life of the elder statesman.
Among the dignitaries are: Governor of Imo State Senator Hope Uzodinma, his deputy, Placid Njoku, accompanied by the full compliment of his expanded executive council, council Chairmen and various appointees, Former Imo Governor, Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha, former Deputy Governors of Imo State, Presidents of the Senate, Senator Pius Anyim and Senator Adolphus Wabara, former Military Administrator of Old Imo State, General Ike Nwachukwu, Leader of Afenifere, Pa Adebanjo, Leader of the Niger Delta, Pa Edwin Clerk, Director General, PDP Governors Forum, Hon. CID Maduabum, National Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party, Senator Samuel Anyanwu, among others.
While it was evident that Governor Hope Uzodimma had the apparatus of his appointees, fully mobilised to the church service, Hon. Ihedioha walked in privately and sat quietly while the service lasted.
About eight Bishops from various dioceses and a retinue of clergymen, officiated the high mass which had various media houses present.
The service had erupted with cheers in a show of love and solidarity for Hon. Emeka Ihedioha when the Most Rev. David Onuoha, Archbishop of Owerri Ecclesiastical Province, at the opening of his homily, acknowledged the presence of some dignitaries including Gov Uzodinma. But at the mention of Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha the congregation erupted in jubilation and applause.
Again, when the host and presiding Bishop, Rt. Hon. Chukwuma Oparah, took time to welcome dignitaries, including Governor Uzodinma; but at mention of the Ihedioha, the congregation again cheered in spontaneous jubilation in demonstration of their love and solidarity to him. The ovation was so loud that it took extra minutes to calm the joyous crowd. Ihedioha, humbled by the ovation, waved in acknowledgement.
Then came the icing on the cake. This time Governor Uzodinma who was already visibly worried, made to address the church. While he was yet on the protocols and mentioned the name of Ihedioha, the congregation could not hold their love as they erupted in joy. This particular scene, rattled the Governor who had to pause for for the cheers to recede.
Governor Uzodinma and the top hierarchy of the APC in Imo State have been losing sleep as a result of the rousing receptions and show of love that greet Ihedioha at events across the State.
In their separate reactions, one of the officiating priests, Rev. Williams Ibeh and a Knight of the Church, Sir, Evan’s Macaulay, expressed delight, describing the development as a pointer to what to expect in the 2023 election.
“I feel very relieved, seeing this for myself. For me, I am.positive of the fact that it is not over for Imo State. Hon. Ihedioha will surely return as Governor. Rev. Ibeh stressed.
“Hon. Ihedioha is the man of the people. He is sp loved. And you can see that the people miss him as Governor. All I will say is that we are ready to reclaim our State under his leadership in this coming election.
Recall that Hon. Ihedioha won the March 9, 2019 governorship election in Imo State and his tenure was truncated following January 14, 2020 controversial judgement of the Supreme Court which installed Senator Hope Uzodinma, who came a distant fourth as the governor of state.
As the 2023 elections draw closer, the clamour by the citizens for the return of Ihedioha, who is the leader of PDP in the state, to the seat of power is gaining consensus across the state.