FIC Report (Abia State) – Abia Governor, Okezie Victor Ikpeazu, PhD, has mourned the death of the Governorship Candidate of the PDP in the State, Professor Eleazar Uchenna Ikonne.
Ikpeazu in a statement personally signed by him prayed God to grant the soul of the late Professor eternal rest and to those he left behind, the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss.
Professor Ikonne died today, Wednesday at the National Hospital Abuja by 4am after a brief illness, according to a statement by his Son ,Dr Chike Uche – Ikonne for his family.
Ikpeazu further directed “that all flags in Abia State PDP offices be lowered and flown at half mast while all campaign activities for the party at all levels be suspended until Monday, 30th January, 2023.”
He also urged all Leaders and Members of the Party to remain calm as they seek for a way out of the terrible situation.
The statement reads: “It is with a heavy heart but total submission to the will of God that we announce the passing of our Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship candidate for the 2023 general elections, Prof Eleazar Uchenna Ikonne, which sad event took place in the early hours of today at the National Hospital, Abuja, after a brief illness.“While we condole with the family of the late Professor of Optometry, the PDP family and Abians in general, we pray God to have mercy on his soul, grant him eternal rest and give everyone affected by his unfortunate demise the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss.
“As a mark of honour to our dear departed brother, I hereby direct that all flags in Abia State PDP offices be lowered and flown at half mast while all campaign activities for the party at all levels be suspended until Monday, 30th January, 2023.
“I urge all PDP leaders and members to remain calm as we navigate through this difficult period together.”
The Governor prayed that God grants the immediate family, the PDP and the entire Abians the fortitude to bear the huge loss.
The Governor in a statement personally signed by him, directed that all flags in Abia State PDP offices to be lowered and flown at half mast while all campaign activities for the party at all levels be suspended until Monday, 30th January, 2023 as a mark of honour.
In a related development, the Abia State People’s Democratic Party while announcing the death of their Guber candidate, Prof. Uche Ikonne called on Party Members to remain steadfast, and await further directives from the party’s leadership.
Hon. Abraham Amah, the Acting Vice Chairman/Acting State Publicity Secretary of the party in a statement also canceled all party activities and campaigns in honour of their fallen compatriot.
ABIA PDP ANNOUNCES THE DEATH OF HER GUBER CANDIDATE, PROF. ELEAZAR UCHE IKONNE*
The Abia PDP regrets to announce the death of Prof. Eleazar Uche Ikonne, her gubernatorial candidate in the 2023 general election.
Prof. Ikonne was until his death an optometrist by profession and had served Abia State in several capacities including as the Rector of Abia State Polytechnic, Aba and as the Vice Chancellor of the State-owned university, Abia state University Uturu.
His death is very painful, coming at a time when he was recuperating from illness and had shown great signs and willingness to join us in the second leg of our ward-to-ward tour that is ongoing across the 184 Wards in the 17 Local Government Areas of Abia State.
Following his death, the State Party hierarchy hereby suspends all campaign activities for three days from tomorrow as a sign of respect and love for the soul of our fallen compatriot.
As we mourn his passage, we commiserate with his immediate family, the Abia State governor, His Excellency Dr. Okezie Victor Ikpeazu, all members of our great Party, the PDP and the good people of Abia State on the death of this illustrious son of the State.
We call on the members of the PDP to remain calm, steadfast and await further directives from the leadership of the Party.
May the gentle soul of Prof. Eleazar Uche Ikonne rest in the bosom of the Lord and may all of us be comforted by our knowledge of the good life he lived on earth.
The statement signed by Dr Uche- Ikonne Chikezie disclosed that the guber candidate died today at the National Hospital Abuja.“I regret to announce the death of my dear father, Prof Eleazar Uchenna Ikonne, who died at the National Hospital Abuja today, 25th January 2023 by 4am after a brief illness.
“He was recovering after taking proper treatment in the United Kingdom but relapsed a few days ago leading to multiple cardiac arrests for which he didn’t recover from.
“Further details and arrangements would be made known to the public after deliberations and meetings are made within the family.”The tussle for Ikonne’s replacement has long started following his health situation.Governor Ikpeazu has been in dilemma of choosing a replacement for the PDP in the state.A repeat guber primary of the PDP is expected in the next 14 days to chose a replacement for late Ikonne.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), has announced that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Abia State chapter should conduct a fresh primary within 14 days following the death of its Governorship Candidate, Uchenna Ikonne.
INEC’s National Commissioner and Chairman Information and Voter Education Committee, Festus Okoye stated that since the election is still one month away, the State’s ruling party still have the window to conduct fresh primary within 14 days of Ikonne’s death.
He further explained that; “if the Candidate dies when polls have commenced, section 34(3)(b) of the Act provides that the running mate shall continue with the election and nominate a new running mate.”
The Commission further warned that should the PDP fail to conduct fresh Primaries within 14 days of the death of the candidate, it is assumed that they will not have a candidate in the election according to“Section 33 of the Electoral Act, 2022 is clear and unambiguous.
As a result of this death ,Abia State has been thrown into deep mourning.
Prof. Ikonne until his death was an Optometrist by profession and had served Abia State in several capacities including as a one time Rector of Abia State Polytechnic , Aba and as the immediate past Vice Chancellor of the State-owned University, Abia State University , Uturu.