By Gideon Njoku
For Senator Ifeanyi Ararume, the All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, Imo governorship candidate in the 2019 Governorship election, it is a lonely period. Not only did he lose the election to PDP’s Governor Emeka Ihedioha, his compatriots have abandoned him. They are dumping APGA into a trash can.
When the results of the Governorship/House of Assembly election was released, even though he did not win, his party, APGA, thanks to his doggedness, won six seats in the Assembly.
Now, he and APGA are left with only one Assembly member. The rest have defected to the ruling PDP.
The first to dump the party was Chiji Collins who hails from the same Okigwe zone with Ararume. About two days after he dumped the party for the PDP, he was elected the Speaker of the Imo House of Assembly, IMHA. That was because the PDP had no member from Okigwe, and the office of the Speaker had been zoned to the zone.
But it turns out that his defection was just an opener.
On Tuesday, June 19, three other lawmakers joined him after he read their letters of intent on the floor of the Assembly.
The Lawmakers who left are those representing Nwangele, Okigwe, and Ihitte Uboma state constituencies – Chyna Iwuanyanwu, Obulimba Samuel, and Michael Njoku. Iwuanyanwu’s father, the late Chyna Iwuanyanwu, was, however, a PDP stalwart.
For Ararume, these defections are a big political blow. He is the life-wire of APGA in the state. Along with Senator Osita Izunaso and a few others, he decamped from the APC to APGA when they fell out with former Governor Rochas Okorocha over his insistence on imposing his son-in-law, Uche Nwosu, as the Imo APC governorship candidate.
As it turned out, both Ararume and Nwosu lost it to Senator Hope Uzodinma.
He picked the APGA ticket, and spent a lot of money to rebuild the party. But that caused a lot of problems for APGA in the state. Other aspirants alleged he bought the ticket, and that there was no primary. Almost all of them, including Uche Onyeagocha, the now Secretary to the Imo State Government, angrily left the party for him.
Ararume invested a lot in the party. He may even have funded the elections of the decampees. His goodwill may even have earned them the victories at the polls.
He dragged Governor Ihedioha before the governorship election tribunal. But Ararume’s party, APGA, has been stripped naked by the PDP. Given this abandonment by the lawmakers, Ararume is like a General in a war front without his troops.
He is on a long, lonely journey.