Former Governor of Imo State, Senator Rochas Okorocha, on Thursday lambasted the Governor of Imo State, Emeka Ihedioha over his alleged indictment for fraud.
Okorocha in a statement by his Special Adviser (Media), Sam Onwuemeodo, was reacting to his alleged diversion of N6 billion which accrued to the state’s Oil Producing Areas Development Commission (ISOPADEC), during his tenure.
A committee set up to investigate ISOPADEC’s activities from May 2011 to May 2019 had indicted the former Governor in the report it presented to Governor Ihedioha on Wednesday.
The Imo West lawmaker said that the Imo Governor “has shown that he lacks the needed capacity to govern Imo and should have at best, gone back to the House of Representatives.”
The statement added that “Okorocha used ISOPADEC funds for those it was meant for and was never invited by the ‘BOYS OYEE’ panel” which allegedly indicted him.
It challenged the Imo State Government to publish how the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) that previously ruled the state for 12 years expended the ISOPADEC funds while Okorocha will also publish what he did with the funds in the last eight years.
The statement titled: “Re-Okorocha diverted N6bn ISOPADEC funds” reads: “The media reports with the referenced caption had attracted our attention and in response, we State as follows:
“Nigerians, especially Imo people should note that between May 29, 2019 when Chief Emeka Ihedioha was inaugurated as governor and today, he has not done any other thing in Imo than fighting his predecessor, Senator Rochas Okorocha and the family.
“And part of the unwarranted wars against Okorocha was the so-called ISOPADEC report which claimed that the former governor, diverted N6billion of the Commission and the Panel never gave details of how it arrived at that.
“Again, not minding that Ihedioha’s government had written 32 petitions to EFCC and 15 Petitions to ICPC against Okorocha and the family, the questionable Panel on ISOPADEC was just a smokescreen because a serious Panel would have invited the former governor or any of the former Chairmen or Managing Directors of the Commission under Okorocha for questioning or fact-finding.
“But the Panel never did that because it was only packaged for blackmail.
“For 12 years, PDP governed Imo and ran ISOPADEC aground. The PDP government did nothing for the oil producing areas of Ohaji, Egbema and Oguta.
“It ran ISOPADEC from a rented three bedroom apartment close to Winners Chapel Owerri, without electricity and water. It was like a beer parlour.
“Militancy was the order of the day with the people deserting their areas. But Okorocha came and built a multi-billion naira edifice in a choice area in Owerri as headquarters of ISOPADEC, built the Marine University at Ossemotor in Oguta which was nearing completion, stopped militancy and rehabilitated the militants through empowerment programmes.
“He carried out multi-million naira empowerments for the youths and women of the areas, built schools and hospitals for them. Tarred their roads and gave them light and also appointed several of their sons and daughters into government.
“He Employed a lot of youths from the areas into ISOPADEC with the current government sacking about 1000 of such elements within three months it came on board.
“Chief Ihedioha, in all honesty, should have as usual, found his way back to the House of Representatives to continue with his areas of specialization, which included over-sight functions and constituency projects business, because he has shown that he does not have the needed capacity to govern a highly enlightened State like Imo.
“For almost 9 months, the Ihedioha government appears stranded with nothing to show that a new government is in Imo and he is diverting attention over his motionless government by fighting Okorocha full-time.
“His administration only exists on the internet. Go to WhatsApp, facebook and other social media networks you see his administration in action, but in Imo, it is a clear case of, the more you look, the less you see. The government is only known for hosting billionaires and multi-millionaires to prodigal luncheon and gala nights almost on daily basis.
“We are also challenging the Ihedioha government to publish what the PDP governments in the State for 12 years did with ISOPADEC funds and let us publish what Okorocha did with ISOPADEC funds in eight years.
“Nigerians especially Imo people are tired of all these bogus accusations by Ihedioha only daily basis. The government should be more matured in its approach to issues especially as they concern the former governor.
“For the sake of emphasis, we want to inform Nigerians that the Ihedioha government is grossly disconnected from the people. It is a government of godfathers and godmothers.
“They have a hotel owned by one of the godfathers where they squander all the resources of the State and with all kinds of taxes and levies forced on the citizenry.
“He has made a lot of promises for Imo people and has not fulfilled any. With all the noise about pension, he has only paid three months. Nothing is working in the State. Kidnapping is back, traffic jam is back, refuse heaps also back to the State Capital.
“This is not what Imo people bargained for after Okorocha had taken the State to an enviable height in all aspects of governance. The PDP government in the State has taken Imo backward.
“Governor Ihedioha should explain to Imo people in particular what he has done with the State’s resources including federal allocations, local government allocations, ISOPADEC funds, internally generated revenue that has snowballed at the expense of Imo people, the N48billion left behind for him by Okorocha and other funds thereto.
“What has he done with these monies? This government is like the old story of tortoise and the wife. And the only consolation is that Imo people never voted for Ihedioha. INEC made him governor.”