Former Governor of Imo State, Senator Rochas Okorocha, has expressed fear that the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) may lose power in 2023 if nothing is done urgently to re-position its leadership.
Okorocha, who spoke in Kano yesterday against the back drop of the protracted feud between the APC National Chairman, Adams Aliyu Oshiomole and Governor Godwin Obasaki of Edo state, warned against internal crisis within the ranks of the APC leadership.
According to him, “a political party should be a group of people who share common political interest and beliefs; people who pursue a common goal or common objective for the good of the common man.
“That will be my understanding of a political party, but any political party that is full of internal crisis is no longer a political party in the real sense of a political party.
“This idea of crisis and idea of commotions show that the said party does not have a common ideology. If the ideology is one and you believe in one thing, there should not be reason for disagreement at that level. You might have a minor disagreement, but when it comes to the issue of do-or-die, it is no longer a political party.
“So, let us see what we can do in this country to redefine what we mean by internal democracy. This is why people have options; this is why we don’t believe in one party system. We must have different political parties and identify the one that is in line with our vision, the one that is line with our political belief.
“Talking about what is happening in Edo State, it is unfortunate but a true political party cannot work against itself. So, I want to advise that they reconcile and relax their differences. The truth is that a party that is divided among it can never stand.”
Okorocha further stated that, “I have said this earlier, APC is a party that we hurriedly put together when we were governors because we felt that the government at that time was not living up to expectation and we wanted to make sure that we brought about change at that time.
“That is why we came together and formed the All Progressives Congress and we ensured that the party got power in 2015. That was how it was then and we achieved that.
“Right now, I think we should continue with the same pace that we started with in 2015 election but that does not seem to be the case. President Muhammadu Buhari gave character to APC. He brought his integrity to bear on the party. He made the party what it is in the northern part of the country and the masses of the North who saw him as a true leader, and we all rode on that to achieve that victory, but after the credibility of Buhari into this party, there seem to be no alternative in the same manner that will drive this party to 2023 victory.
“This is why I expressed my concern that if we are not very careful, APC might go with Buhari in 2023, and that will be a very unfortunate situation for the founding fathers of APC. The party needs to show purposeful leadership, show character,” Okorocha said.
Senator Okorocha, who is the Senate Committee Chairman on Culture and Tourism, also urged the federal government to be more practical on its policy on border closure, pointing out the need to monitor smuggling of goods from illegal borders in the bushes around neighbouring countries, adding, “I think border closure means that we should begin to look inward on better ways to feed ourselves. By creating that kind of atmosphere, people will now begin to understand why we should be self-reliant and ensure food security.