Imo State Governor-elect, Emeka Ihedioha

Over a year since the Supreme Court annulled his election as governor of Imo State, Hon. Emeka Ihedioha, yesterday, slammed the Kano State Governor, Abdullahi Ganduje, urging him to seek the face of God for forgiveness.

Ihedioha spoke at the Shehu Musa Yar’ Adua Centre, venue of the public presentation of the book, “Scents of Power,” written by renown journalist, Dr. Amanze Obi.

It all started when the Kano state governor, who was the chief guest of honour at the event, recognised in order of protocol, dignitaries on the high table which included Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi state, former Senate President, Anyim Pius Anyim, Senators Ben Obi and Kabiru Gaya, among others.

Curiously, he left out Idehioha, an action that did not go well with the former governor.

Called to give his address as Special Guest of Honour, Ihedioha used the opportunity to tell his former colleague what he considered some home truths.

He said: “When Governor Ganduje made his address, he chose not to recognise Emeka Ihedioha. I wasn’t disturbed. It only confirmed what I know. I am sure it confirmed what all of you know: Governor Ganduje belong to the class that is convenient to say but won’t admit that I was the man popularly elected as the governor of Imo state by Imo people. The facts are sacred and history remains history. Our actions in life remain historical and there is nothing we can do about them.

“Governor Ganduje knew when I was Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives and we interfaced. As governors, we shared the Economic Council together and he was aware that I won my election resoundingly but he knew what happened.”

Amidst round of applause, Ihedioha turned to the governor, who was obviously stunned and charged. “Governor Ganduje, I pray that God will give you the courage one day to confess and ask for atonement. Only truth can set us free.”

Ihedioha of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, was declared winner of the March 9, 2019 governorship election in Imo State by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). The Election Tribunal and Appeal Court affirmed the election but on January 14, 2020, a seven-man panel of the Supreme Court led by Chief Justice Tanko Muhammad annulled the election and urged INEC to declare Hope Uzodinma of the All Progressives Congress ( APC), winner of the poll.

Earlier in his remarks, Ganduje, who wrote the foreward to the book, described Amanze as “one of Africa’s finest journalists” who has availed Nigeria his talents and energy both in public and private service.

Continuing, Ganduje chose to speak of the author rather than the book, saying: “We are very good friends even though we only met a few years ago. We met in Imo state when the former governor, Rochas Owelle Okorocha conferred on me the title of Chancellor Order of Imo (COI). Since then, our friendship has continued to grow from strength to strength.

“In spite of his significant achievements in both public and private sectors, I am honestly fascinated by his honest, respectful and humble approach to issues. But this is hardly surprising because it is very clear that he is a man who was well brought up.

“Dr. Obi is not holding any office now, yet he was able to bring together this kind of distinguished audience that we are seeing here today. It is due to the quality of the man that he was able to draw people from everywhere across the country.

“His professional work has impacted on our nation’s life. The time he was appointed to serve as commissioner on two occasion, a lot of journalists and politicians got a chance to work with him. So, he has tasted power. That is why in my opinion in my foreward to the book, I made it clear and suggested that the title of this book should have been Taste of Power,” he said.

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