On the 21st day of July, 2020 the Executive Governor of Lagos State Mr Babajide Sanwo Olu hosted Hon Jude Emeka Idimogu in Government House, Ikeja where the Governor in the presence of Lagos State Legislators, APC leaders, leaders of thought of Igbo extraction acknowledged Hon Idimogu as Apex APC leader of NdiIgbo in Lagos State. The Governor said that he has heard much of Hon Idimogu’s contribution towards integration of ndị Igbo into the mainstream ruling party –the APC as well as the potential goodwill and good electoral fortune he will bring to the party. He concluded that henceforth, he will direct his Chief of Staff to deal with Hon Idimogu as the new APC Apex Igbo leader in Lagos State.
Few days after, to be specific on the 24th day of July, 2020 Mr Joe Igbokwe dared the governor when he released a press statement saying that his position as APC Apex leader is not in contention. This
shows how desperate Joe Igbokwe has become over the tussle.
Come to think about it, who made Joe Igbokwe Apex APC Igbo leader in Lagos in the first place? He arrogated such position to himself and like a King that crowned himself, he reigned without authority, no followers, no supporters and that accounted for the all round rejection of APC by ndị Igbo in Lagos State in the past. During election, he corners every material meant to mobilise ndịIgbo to himself and that accounted to why he is very unpopular among Igbo folks that he can not even win ward election anywhere in Lagos State.
Now that Hon Idimogu has been mobilising support for APC and large number of ndịIgbo are trooping into the party, Joe Igbokwe wants to put spanner in the wheel. All along, he has been given false impression to powers that be in Alausa that ndịIgbo hates APC, that they like money and he is the only honest Igbo man in Lagos State. He uses every opportunity at any given time to insult ndiIgbo in Lagos and at the same time bastardise everything Igbo tradition holds dear. For 21 years he has used Igbo name to achieve selfish ends. To him as long as he has enough to eat and drink, others can go to hell ten times and remain there. He is contented with the crumbs that fall from the master’s table. He contented being at Tincan Port running after containers extorting Igbo importers in the name of collecting revenue for Lagos State. Today, he is happy hanging around Lagos State Secretariat in the name of serving as Adviser to the Governor on Drainages. Tomorrow if we call government appointees, he will come out. That’s the level the man has depraved.
It could be remembered that Hon Idimogu was chosen by Igbo people in APC to lead them because he has demonstrated that he is true son of Igbo land. While Joe Igbokwe mounts himself on a high horse expecting everyone to come and bow before him, Hon Idimogu goes to his people pleading that they should join the party and to join hands to take Lagos State to the next level. He has won election back to back and improved the relationship between host communities and ndịIgbo in Lagos State. No wonder the leadership of Ọhaneze Lagos, Igbo Speaking Community, Lagos State, the Association of Town Union and ndị Ezes are solidly behind him.
Joe Igbokwe has lost relevance and the manner he is struggling to be relevant shows that he has equally lost credibility. Imagine, the State Governor who doubles as the party leader in Lagos State publicly declared support to who he understood has the mandate of overwhelming majority of Igbo people and a ceetainJoe Igbokwe is one side humiliating himself. What he is doing amounts to anti party activities which if not checked may cause disaffection among APC members in Lagos State. The good thing is that it is no longer business as usual and many Igbo people in Lagos have seen and know Joe Igbokwe in his true color.
Val Iwuchukwu, Attorney at Law writes from Fagbile 3,White Sand, Isheri Osun, Alimoso, Lagos State.