By Henry Ekpe
This week, the first son of Senator Ifeanyi Godwin Araraume, also named after his father, officially became a member of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
Before now, Ifeanyi Araraume (Jnr) a Lawyer by training, could be said to be a member of the ruling All Progressive Congress APC because he was a Commissioner under the administration of Governor Rochas Okorochas.
Apart from his popular father, not much can be traced to Araraume (Jnr) as political exploits, except rising to the position of a Commissioner, which many believe he attained, in the first place, because of his Father’s connection.
Although Ifeanyi Araraume (Jnr) could be described as a big catch by the PDP, but the bigger catch would be his father.
Therefore, the question becomes: Is Araraume (Snr) about joining PDP? Could it be that his son is now the John the Baptist, sent ahead to preparing the road for the “Messiah”?
From all indications, it could be easily predicted that the Senior Araraume is on his way to PDP once more.
Yes, Araraume has all the right in the world to relocate to PDP, since it has been open to the world that the Senator has been treated shabbily by the ruling All Progressive Congress.
And heading to PDP is not new to Senator Araraume, because that was where he started his elective political career.
The PDP helped in shaping his political voyages, and in throwing him up to stardom.
Although, Araraume was the pioneer Imo State chairman of All Peoples Party, APP before it morphed into All Nigeria Peoples Party, ANPP. But he quickly jettisoned APP and moved to PDP, where he picked the party’s Senatorial ticket for Okigwe Zone in 1999, and was in the Red Chamber for consecutive Eight years.
However, he fell out with PDP, when his dream to succeed Chief Achike Udenwa as Governor in 2007 could not sail through, following a high wire conspiracy from “Above”.
Therefore, in 2011, he still pursued his Governorship ambition, this time under ACN, which could not fly, but unfortunately facilitated the failure of his kinsman and brother, Dr Ikedi Ohakim being elected for a second term.
This because Araraume shared the Okigwe Zone vote with Ohakim, since both men came from that area. Had it been the Okigwe vote went to then sitting Governor’s, Ballot box he would have made second term.
In 2015, Araraume returned to base (PDP), mainly to continue his quest to Governor Imo State.
But this time, the enfant terrible, Emeka Ihedioha became the trouble he met, as the Mbaise born Youthful Politician beat Araraume to the coveted PDP Governorship ticket.
When Ihedioha pinned then incumbent Governor, Owelle Rochas Okorocha down for a supplementary election, out of anger for not picking PDP ticket, Araraume joined forces with Okorocha for the rerun polls which Okorocha escaped by the whiskers.
That was how Araraume joined APC, and it was rumoured that Okorocha will hand over to him for helping him defeat Ihedioha.
But when 2019 approached and Okorocha began to murmur how no body over fifty years will succeed him, Araraume read Okorocha’s lips clearly and began watching developments
Later, and dramatically, the Isiala Mbano born rich politician became the Governorship candidate of All Progressive Grand Alliance, APGA, dislodging the likes of Dr Ikedi Ohakim, and Hon Uche Onyeagocha from the party’s Governorship list and many had thought that either of the two would clinch the APGA ticket.
However, after the general election, Araraume came third, and went to court. But when Supreme Court said the Imo Governor was Senator Hope Uzodinma, and no more Ihedioha, Senator Araraume was among those present in Jan 15, 2020, as Uzodinma was sworn-in at Heros Square, Owerri.
By then, it was not clear if Araraume had dumped APGA. It has not even been confirmed now if he has officially routed back to APC. But what many confirmed was when the Lion of tribe of Ishiebu was named as chairman of Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation NNPC in an APC controlled Federal Government.
Now Political pundits are predicting that Araraume may gradually be tracking back to PDP, if he could allow his son, seen as the heir apparent to his political Empire, in PDP.
Currently, the matter is that if truly Araraume is joining PDP, how prepared is Imo PDP to welcome such a Heavy weight in their fold? It is obvious that whenever a Big Fish lands into Ocean, it must splatter water.
There is no gain saying the fact that Araraume will be a fortune for Imo PDP. He is a political General in Okigwe Zone politics. He has dip pockets. He has experience in political roforofo and more.
Therefore, he cannot come without a bag of “proposals”. So, what is inside that bag? As a practicing politician, will Araraume not contest any election in 2023? What position would that be? Will he finish what he started in the Okigwe Senatorial Zone bye- election, or would he once more try to accomplish the elusive Governorship project?
One thing sure is that if Araraume joins Imo PDP, his presence in Okigwe will be of immense advantage to the party because of his popularity there, and fighting spirit.
Indeed, joining the PDP will create a platform for the political Bulldozer to reestablish his battered territory of Okigwe by some of his brothers and sisters, supported by Invading Forces of occupation.
Senator Araraume has every right to be angry wish APC for the wrought done on his person after he helped the party claim Imo Governorship Seat through the Court.
His litigation against Ihedioha and PDP spurred other challengers on. His case against PDP and Ihedioha contributed in mounting pressure on the system.
He even helped Uzodinma in his first days in office, with his regular faces and link to the Imo Government.
At least, he was present when Uzodinma was inaugurated, which certainly gave his followers the leverage to embrace the Uzodinma Government.
However, all that political romance came to test and collapsed, as Araraume was highly disappointed after Uzodinma failed to reciprocate his gesture by backing another Horse in the Okigwe Senatorial bye-election. Certainly, had Uzodinma gave him support, Araraume would have been a third term Senator now.
After that political debacle, the taciturn Business Mogul marched on, and surprised Imo political Bookmakers when “out of nowhere”, his name propped up as Chairman of NNPC Board. This was too heavy and shocked his political detractors.
In the end, Araraume could not attain that plum height, as petitions from enemies denied him that seat which many said would have helped some Imo citizens, political leanings apart.
Sources said that Imo Government may have had a hand in that disaster to Destiny Organization as a whole. This allegation was confirmed when the Okigwe Zone Senator, Chief Frank Ibezim was quoted as having said that “He lost that job because he doesn’t respect the Governor”.
Therefore, when is Imo people expecting Araraume to make his next political move? As usual of him, he hardly speaks and only allows his body languages for Soothsayers to read his action.
Therefore, with his son, Ifeanyi Araraume (Jnr) now in PDP fold, indications are that Araraume is coming. How prepared is Imo PDP to welcome home the Big Fish? That is, if he is really coming. But is he coming?