The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Sunday declared Governor Hope Uzodimma of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as the winner of the Imo State Governorship Election.
Uzodimma defeated his opponents in all Local Government Areas of the State.
The election was contested between Uzodimma, Samuel Anyanwu of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Athan Achonu of the Labour Party (LP).
Uzodimma polled a total of 540,308, while Anyanwu scored 71,503 and Achonu garnered 64,081
Profile of Hope Uzodinma:
Born on 12 December 1958 in Omuma, the headquarters of Oru East Local Government Area of Imo State in the Southeastern part of Nigeria, Hope Odidika Uzodinma is the incumbent governor of the state and was also re-elected as governor on November 11th.
His first tenure commenced in 2020 after the Supreme Court nullified the election of Emeka Ihedioha of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and declared him the winner of the March 9, 2019, governorship election, and this first tenure ends in January 2024.
In May 2023, Uzodinma, became chairman of the Progressive Governors Forum, the umbrella body of governors of the ruling APC, replacing Abubakar Atiku Bagudu.
Uzodinma was born to Chief Michael Uzodinma, who held the chieftaincy title of Igwe of Ozuh Omuma, and his mother, Ezinne Rose Uzodinma (née Nneoha). He is a kinsman of the Okoro family of Etiti-Omuma.
He is a devout Catholic and is married to Chioma Uzodinma with seven children.
Uzodinma attended Mgbidi Secondary School in Omumu, Oru West, Imo State, Nigeria, for his secondary education.
He holds a Diploma in Maritime Management Technology, and a Higher Diploma in the same field, from the Federal University of Technology Owerri.
He has a Bachelor’s degree in International Studies and Diplomacy from Washington University in St. Louis and a Master’s Degree in Human Relations from the University of Nigeria Nsukka (UNN).
The APC chieftain also has a degree in political science, from the University of London and an Honorary Doctorate degree from Imo State University.
Uzodinma started his political journey during the Second Nigerian Republic, and on the platform of the then-ruling National Party of Nigeria (NPN), he emerged as Imo State youth leader in 1983.
During the 1990s, he advanced his political career on the heels of the United Nigeria Congress Party.
Before he joined politics, he was a vast businessman with ventures in a few areas of the economy, Naija News gathered.
When Nigeria returned to democracy in the late 1990s, he joined the PDP precisely in 1999. While with the PDP, he served as a member of the party’s National Caucus, and National Executive Committee and on the Board of Trustees, at various intervals between 1999 and 2017.
In 2003, he decamped to the Alliance for Democracy (AD) and emerged as the party’s governorship candidate in the state.
After losing the election to Achike Udenwa, he returned to the PDP in February 2004, and contested the party’s governorship primaries in December 2006, but didn’t win the election.
On 29 May 2011, Uzodinma was sworn in as a Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, representing Imo State (West Senatorial District) on the platform of the PDP.
He was re-elected for a second term in the Senate during the 2015 election, and in 2018, he left the PDP to join the ruling APC in order to contest for governor of Imo State in the 2019 general elections.
After the March 9 polls, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) declared Emeka Ihedioha of the PDP as the winner of the governorship election with 273,404 votes, and Uzodinma was in fourth place with 96,458 votes.
However, he challenged the victory of Ihedioha up to the Supreme Court, and on 14 January 2020, the apex court declared him the winner of the March 9 2019, governorship polls in the state.
The court held that results from 388 polling units were wrongly excluded from votes ascribed to Uzodinma and the APC in Imo, adding that the first appellant Uzodinma holds the majority of lawful votes cast.
On 15 January 2020, he and Placid Njoku were subsequently sworn in as the Governor of Imo State and Deputy Governor of Imo State, respectively, and their tenure ends in January 2024.