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HE Rt. Hon Chief Sir Chukwuemeka Nkem Ihedioha (CON) - politician and Businessman

Updated: Jan 15, 2020

Rt. Hon Chief Sir Emeka Ihedioha (born 24 March 1965) is a politician and Businessman. He was the Governor of Imo State from May 2019 to January 2020. He is a Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) member and represented the Aboh Mbaise/Ngor Okpala Federal Constituency of Imo State. He was also the former deputy speaker of the House of Representatives. He holds a National Honor as Commander of the Order of the Niger (CON). He is also Ugwu Aro.

In 2015, he served as Speaker of the House of Representatives following the defection of Aminu Tambuwal to APC. He became Governor in 2019, winning the Gubernatorial race.

Ugwu Aro was born on 24 March 1965 at Mbutu Aboh Mbaise Local Government Area in Imo State, South-East Nigeria.

He attended Town School Mbutu in Aboh Mbaise and completed same at SDA Primary School Abule Oja, Yaba in 1976. He had his secondary education at St. Ephraim's Secondary School, Owerrinta in present-day Abia State . He then proceeded to the University of Lagos, Akoka-Yaba, where he obtained a Bachelor of Science (B.SC) degree in Food Science and Technology, in 1988.

Ihedioha took an executive certificate course in financial management from Stanford University, and a leadership certificate course from Harvard Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.

In 1992, Ihedioha was appointed press officer to the Senate President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Chief Iyorchia Ayu. A year later he was appointed chief press secretary to the Deputy Senate President. Following military incursion in the polity in November 1993, Ihedioha returned to his communications practice as Chief Executive Officer of First Page Communications. He became Director of Publicity of the newly formed People’s Democratic Movement, the purveyor of the ruling People Democratic Party in 1998.

He was appointed special assistant to the Presidential Adviser on Utilities in July 1999, as special assistant of media and publicity to the President of the Senate in November 1999 and as special assistant on political matters to the Vice President in September 2001. He won a seat in the House of Representative as a member representing Aboh-Mbaise-Ngor Okpala Federal Constituency of Imo State in 2003.

He was the deputy speaker of the House of Representatives from 2011 to 2015. During this period, he served as the Speaker of the House of Representatives after Tambuwal's defection to the APC and choice to stand down.

On 9 March 2019, Ihedioha contested for the gubernatorial seat for Imo State under the political platform of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). On 11 March 2019, Ihedioha was declared Governor-elect by the Independent Electoral Commission sitting in Imo-State after he defeated Uche Nwosu (son-in-law of the incumbent governor) who ran under the Action Alliance Party (AA), with a total of 273,404 votes.

Ihedioha is a Knight of the order of St. Christopher of the Anglican Communion. He was conferred with Diocesan Merit Award by the Diocese of Mbaise, Anglican Communion and is a recipient of several chieftaincy titles.

A fellow of the Chartered Institute of Shipping, he was awarded the Most Outstanding Maritime Legislator by the Maritime Reporters Association of Nigeria; Distinguished Service Award from the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations and as one of Nigeria's 50 Most Outstanding Legislators (1999–2009).

Ihedioha's business interests span real estate development, industrialized farming, hospitality and petroleum sectors. He married Lady Ebere Ihedioha and has four children.

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