2015 – Imoke’s wife unveiled political structure for Senatorial ambition

At the weekend, the wife of Governor of Cross River State, Mrs Obioma Liyel Imoke formally unveiled another structure called ‘Power Political Advancement for Women (PPA4W) Project’ allegedly for her senatorial ambition even though her husband quickly interjected that having been a one-time senator, it was she that was; and having been a governor, it is she that is in the saddle, actively giving him all the supports to succeed.
But many insist that behind the veiled reasons for the establishment of the PPA4W by the governor’s wife might be her unspoken ambition to prepare herself to gun for Cross River central senatorial district seat at the Senatte thereby putting the Senate leader, Senator Victor Ndoma-Egba who currently represents that district and a close confidant to her husband, the governor, to be rattled.
The occasion was the night she used her famed pet project Partnership Opportunities for Women Empowerment Realisation (POWER) to unveil PPA4W under which auspices she said she was raising funds to support female politicians in the state to excel as council chairmen and councilors in the forthcoming Local Government Council elections.  More than N50 million was raised  inside the peregrine hall of the governor’s official residence by the many business moguls, top politicians, National Assembly members, PDP leaders, government contractors, etc.
Chairman of the fund raising, Senator Grace Folashade Jackson Bent from Adamawa State, other women political leaders, include Senator Florence Ita-Giwa, ex minister of Aviation Kema Chikwe, President of National Council of Women Societies in the state, Rev Grace Ekanem, herself a former aspirant to the House of Representatives, and others continually praised the wisdom behind the event and hoped that Obioma with such mind to help others, would do well by the time she would be ready to seek election to the National Assembly.
Other speakers said for the state to have given landmark opportunities to female politicians and with such pronounced support from the governor’s wife, it has made the state much different, a model for emulation and a place where much impact of women would be felt.
Senator Bent and former minister Chikwe said they have known Mrs Imoke as one with a large-heart and a determined woman who when she has set her mind towards a particular thing would not relent if she did not achieve it.
“Obioma has been a girl I have known for a long time.  Now having set her mind towards the success of female politicians in the state and elsewhere and other political projects, I know that she will definitely succeed”, Chikwe said.
From time to time, in the course of her speech, Sen. Bent more than twice reminded Obioma that she would do well as a member of the National Assembly, encouraging her to go for it because if she succeeded to be elected in far away Adamawa even though she originally hails from Osun State, she too can succeed even though not one from Cross River except by marriage like her.
But Governor Imoke in his lengthy remark softly disagreed that she could not now make such ambition. “No, I don’t think my dear wife would want to go for the Senate. I have been there.  Having been there, it means both of us were there. Even now, she too is the governor because I am the governor. So, going for election as Senator not now…  We have been there.”
However, many described her unveiling of the political structure as a subtle way of announcing and preparing herself for life after 2015 when her husband leaves power.
An opposition politician, Justus Inyang said that “No one needs a soothsayer to interpret this move by the governor’s wife.  And you do not also expect the governor himself to confirm her intention yet when the time is not ripe.  You mean she would just establish the political power project just to raise funds to support other politicians going for Council chairmanship. The handwriting is clearly on the wall.  These chairmen would be her foot soldiers by the time she would formally declare her ambition before 2015. Imoke, you should know, is a cunning politician.”
Obioma said that she understands her husband better than anyone else. She said the man has very good heart for women, and that there is hardly anything she requests of him that he would not grant.  “He might not say it openly but by the next time I make another plea, he would just say, ‘why are we still discussing that matter!’  Imoke listens to and has a very good heart for women.”
She maintained that having been at the vanguard of encouraging women to emerge into prominence, she would work consistently to ensure that the women politicians, specially selected to contest the council election, would not fail themselves or disappoint those of them that worked to bring out women.
She told the selected female politicians, “We a responsibility to excel and not to disappoint so that many more women can similarly come up.  To this end, we have set a standard that they must not go below in their style of politicking.”


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