Ex-governor of Imo State and Nigerian senator [APC, Imo West], Rochas Okorocha has formally thrown in his hat into the ring to contest for Nigeria’s top job of president in the 2023 presidential elections.
Okorocha is one of a growing number of aspirants of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), in an election considered to be decisive for the future of the West African country.
In a rousing speech during a world press conference he held today at the Yar’Adua International Conference Center in the nation’s capital city of Abuja, Rochas – as he is fondly called, declared, “This morning, after careful considerations and consultations, while putting the greatness of our nation foremost, I would be publicly announcing my decision to join the race to become the 5th democratically elected President of our great and blessed nation Nigeria.
The time has come, he said, “when tough and necessary decisions that shape what would become the history of our dear nation are to be made. These decisions are not to be influenced by sentiments, fear or personal interests”.
“Our nation’s collective interest is that which should guide the making of these decisions. Passion for our people should be the foundation of these decisions”.
“I’m not in politics for what I can get, I’m in politics for what I can give”
Mr Okorocha is known for his extensive philanthropy, reputed to have over 20,000 pupils drawn from all regions of Nigeria and other African nations under his scholarship.
While governor of his state, he prioritized education offering free education in the primary and secondary school categories.
Permutations of an informal presidential power rotation in Nigeria’s political culture, expected to be zoned to the SouthEast region may favour his chances. Nonetheless, other formidable aspirants of APC from his region are expected to soon join the fray, namely, the governor of Ebonyi, David Umahi; ex-governor of Abia, Senators Orji Uzor Kalu [APC, Abia North] among others.
Outside the venue of the declaration, a mammoth crowd of supporters greeted Mr Okoroacha who was with his wife and other bigwig political associates.
Nigeria’s presidential election is to take place in February 2023.