Abia lawmaker, Igwe, emerges Deputy Governorship Candidate of PDP

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From Boniface Okoro, Umuahia

A member of Abia State legislature and an American-trained legal icon, Barr. Okey Igwe, has emerged the Deputy Governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Abia State for the 2023 governorship election.

Igwe who is currently representing Umunneochi State Constituency in the Abia State House of Assembly, was nominated after being screened by a Committee set up by the National Working Committee (NWC) of the PDP.

The announcement of the choice of the Abia lawmaker as the Deputy Governorship candidate was made on Wednesday, June 22, 2022, with the Abia State chapter of PDP hailing the choice of Igwe as good for power equation balance in the state.

The Deputy Governorship Candidate, who has maintained a meteoric rise since he joined politics, was the Executive Chairman of Umunneochi Local Government Area from 2016 till 2019 when he contested and won the House of Assembly election for Umunneochi State Constituency, a position he currently occupies.

Meanwhile, the Abia State chapter of the PDP has expressed happiness over the emergence of Barr. Igwe as the Deputy Governorship Candidate of the party in the state.

In a congratulatory letter to Barr. Igwe, signed by the Vice Chairman (North) and Acting Publicity Secretary of the party, Hon. Elder Amah Abraham, it said the lawmaker, who the party described as a man of integrity, was chosen after “very exhaustive consultations and considerations of the necessity to balance the power equation in Abia State.”

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Abia PDP said in the letter titled: “Abia PDP congratulates Barr. Okey Igwe on his emergence as the running mate to Prof. Uchenna Ikonne,” that it was happy that Igwe was fit for the position, given his rich background and versatile experience as a lawmaker, a former Executive Chairman of a local government and as a lawyer.

The letter reads in part: “Abia PDP congratulates Barr. Phillip Okey Igwe on his emergence as the running mate to Prof. Uchenna Ikonne, the PDP flag bearer, for the Abia 2023 governorship election. The Ikonne/Igwe ticket is a sign of greater things to come to Abia, given its masterful combination of grace, character, integrity and complementary capability. 

“Barr. Igwe’s selection came after very exhaustive consultations and considerations of the necessity to balance the power equation in Abia State and the announcement follows his successful screening by the Committee set up the National Working Committee (NWC) of the PDP for the exercise.

“He comes into the position with ample electoral value and political experience needed to deliver Abia State to the PDP in the forthcoming governorship election. His tripodal formation as a lawyer, legislator and former Executive Chairman of a Local Government Area puts his suitability for the position of a deputy governor beyond dispute.”

“It is worthy to note that Barr. Igwe’s fit-for-purpose in this assignment is very timeous, given the challenges that confront us a people, especially that of insecurity, being that he is a veteran of the US military who served in the US Air Force during the Iraq combat years after the September 11 attacks. It is obvious that his military experience will help to eliminate insecurity in Abia State and its environs,” the letter added.

“The Party, once more congratulates Barr. Okey Igwe on this very important nomination. There could be no higher honour for him at this moment because of the opportunity the position offers him to serve his people; a service he has become used to in his previous assignments. 

“While we congratulate him on his emergence as the running mate to our Party’s flag bearer, we also call on all members of our great Party and Ndi Abia in general to fully support the Ikonne/Igwe ticket and work towards the Party’s victory at all levels in the 2023 general election,” the Abia PDP said.

49 year-old Igwe hails from Umuogele, Amuda Isuochi in Umunneochi Local Government Area of Abia State.

An American-trained legal practitioner and successful businessman, Igwe is the current member representing Umunneochi State Constituency in the Abia State House of Assembly. He served as the Executive Chairman of Umunneochi Local Government Area of Abia State from 2016-2019.

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Before his foray into politics and governance, Igwe had distinguished himself in the private sector as a legal practitioner, both in the United States and Nigeria.

He is a member of the American Bar Association, New York Bar Association and American Immigration Lawyers Association.

In Nigeria, he founded and served as the Principal Partner of Lagem Firma and Partners and remains a vocal member of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA).

Aside from his legal practice, he is also an astute corporate mogul who spread his tentacles into several business sectors. He was Executive Director Chrisnak Group, the parent company of Mainland Oil & Gas Ltd., as well as the Founder and Pioneer Publisher/Chief Executive Officer of The Oracle Today Newspapers Ltd.

Barr. Okey Igwe is a deeply religious person, and comes from a humble Christian background. His parents were originally Methodists but converted to the United Church of Christ (UCC) which he attends regularly at Isuochi but is a strong member of the Dominion Faith International Ministry in Lagos.

An avid sports lover, he is happily married to Mrs. Kimberly Igwe and the union is blessed with two sons and a daughter.