By Chijindu Emeruwa
A close associate of the Majority Chief Whip of the Nigeria Senate, Senator Orji Uzor Kalu, and former Governorship Candidate in Abia State, Chief Ndukwe Ikoh, has claimed that the attacks on the Speaker of the State Assembly, Hon Chinedum Orji, over recent reconcilation with Kalu, were part of gimmicks by unscrupulous elements from Abia South district to truncate the charter of equity which stipulated power shift among three senatorial zones of Abia State.
He also alleged that the unscrupulous elites have recycled and plotted to install another person from the same zone(Abia South), which the APC chieftain opined, the Speaker, Chinedum Orji, allegedly uncovered as affront to the charter of equity.
This, Ikoh posited, was the reason on the continued media onslaughters against the Abia Speaker over his visit to the leader of the opposition All Progressives Congress, APC, in the State, Senator Orji Kalu by prominent Abia South leaders and officials of Governor Okezie Ikpeazu-led government.
He spoke during an interview with newsmen, in Umuahia, on Tuesday.
Ikoh criticized the call for the Speaker’s resignation and further alleged that the agitators had continued to milk the state’s treasury through fanning embers of discord among political leaders of the State.
The Frontline politician also explained that based on the unfolding scenario, the Speaker deem it fit and visited Kalu to build bridges across party lines in the interest of the State.
His words, “What Chinedum Orji did was the right thing. It was politically misunderstood. And those currently fanning embers of discord are the same people milking the state by creating crisis among leaders. Anybody who tried to see Chinedum Orji’s action not being right, that person doesn’t have conscience.
“The Speaker visited his great godfather and that should not be misconstrued. He visited his great godfather to build bridge across political lines. I’m smelling a rat that some disgruntled elements from Abia South Senatorial zone are plotting to truncate the Abia Charter of Equity.
“They want to illegitimatize that they were not the people that brought Ikpeazu to office. That it was the speaker and family that brought Ikpeazu, so that, it is now their(Ukwa/Ngwa bloc) turn in 2023, to produce next Governor for Abia. Because, there is a plot that Okezie Ikpeazu would go to Senate and Enyinnaya Abaribe will contest for Governor in 2023. That is the whole problem you are seeing, and Ikpeazu is aware of these problem. It is not that he is not aware.
“So, they are just attacking the Speaker, because, he knows what they want to do. Andd as a smart person, that is why he went to Kalu. Infact, Abaribe is the archiect of all these plots. The charter of equity must continue. Power must shift to Abia North zone”.
Reports had it that the Speaker, Rt. Hon. Chinedum Orji, had led delegations from his Umuahia hometown and paid solidarity visit to ex-Abia Governor, Senator Kalu at his Abuja residence, over his release from federal prison on alleged financial fraud.
Orji was quoted as asking Senator Kalu to return and take his rightful position in the State and further described Kalu as “Authentic leader” of Abia State.
The purported reconciliation by the duo have continued to generate mixed feelings in the fold of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in Abia State, with many PDP leaders describing the development as treacherous.
AKELICIOUS however recalled that the Deputy Chief of Staff in the office of the Deputy Governor of Abia State and a chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Don Ubani, had in a statement, asked the Speaker to resign for allegedly pledging allegiance and loyalty to the leader of the opposition All Progressives Congress, APC, in Abia, and current Senate Chief Whip, Senator Orji Uzor Kalu.
Ubani said, “As the Speaker of Abia State House of Assembly, with the party(PDP) i helped convene in 1998 as majority, my conclusion remains that Speaker Chinedum Orji has committed a political sacrilege. Having declared Chief Orji Uzor Kalu, the Authentic leader of Abia State, he(the Speaker), has no political morality presiding over the Peoples Democratic Party-controlled House of Assembly. I ask him to resign”.