Athan Achonu, the imo state Labour Party's (LP) Gubernatorial candidate is insistent that he is the one to beat in the race, claiming that not even the incumbent Hope Uzodimma can convince him to give up on his dream.
Achonu claims he intends to run the entire race, despite some rumors suggesting the LP candidate is only a stand-in who will shortly be bought off.
“The people of Imo State already know the truth. They are following me. How can I be a placeholder for Hope Uzodimma? Give me $1 million? That’s not possible,” he said on Friday’s edition of Channels Television’s Politics Today.
“I have been around in this country. I am very well known. I can say that for myself. So, I have a reputation in this country. I am a man of integrity. Hope Uzodimma can’t buy me even with $100 million. It is not possible. Nobody can buy me. Money can’t buy me.”
The former senator claimed that running for governor of Imo was not something he had planned to do.
He had to step back into the ring because his supporters were pleading with him to continue in politics and change things in Imo State.
“So, they said if I abandon them, they would not have any place to go. I entered that race with that in mind. I didn’t want to run for governor,” Senator Achonu added.
The LP candidate, who bemoaned the difficulties in conducting business in the Southeast, claimed that his desire to change the course of history drove him to enter the governorship race.
“Igbos have been chased out of Igbo land. It is like an occupied territory. So, every half a kilometre, you see a Police checkpoint, you see a Customs checkpoint. So, people cannot trade freely,” he added.
“So, I now started something called Akwu Ruo Ulo [Let the wealth reach home] asking Igbos to come home and invest in spite of all the obstacles placed on their path that eventually good leadership will emerge and we would dismantle those obstacles. So, that’s why I now came,” the LP chieftain said.