Governor Hope Uzodinma and his penultimate predecessor, Rochas Okorocha were on Thursday locked in a war of words after the recovery of government property in a warehouse supposedly secreted by Okorocha. The Okorocha, Uzodinma fight follows the struggle for political supremacy in the All Progressives Congress, APC.
A communique from the State Government revealed that the warehouse was exposed by a team led by the commissioner for commerce and tourism, Comrade Simeon Ebegbulem.
Found in the warehouse along Aba road, opposite Alaba International Market were various household electrical fittings and appliances including inverters, streetlights and such.
The Okorocha, Uzodinma fight came as the government said:
“Today the Imo state Government through the Ministry of Commerce and Industry has made a shocking finding and revelation where a warehouse was discovered with millions of naira worth of properties meant for the development of the state.
Conducting the media men round the warehouse, the Hon. Commissioner for Commerce and Industry Comr. Simon Ebegbulem revealed that it was unfortunate that anybody or group of persons could decide to rob the people of their common wealth all for their selfish interest and for personal aggrandizement.
“The shocking discovery was made following the directive of the governor, Sen. Hope Uzodimma who in the past had revealed the many atrocities of the Rochas Okorocha administration of which this is one of it and his firm resolve to ensure that all government looted properties are recovered.”
“It is evident that the shared prosperity government and its 3R mantra initiative is very much focused on getting the state to work again by recovering all that has been stolen by crude politicians.
“The warehouse which is located at Aba/Owerri road is loaded with solar panels and its components, traffic lights, inverters, street lights, decorative trees, heavy machinery, mixers, sewing machines. Fresh tracks of trailer tyres were seen on the spot which shows that some items have been moved from the warehouse already.
“By this singular act of the state government, it has read the riot act to looters and those in possession of government properties illegally to return it now or risk prosecution.”
Okorocha, Uzodinma Fight: Former Governor Responds
Okorocha responding in a statement issued through his media adviser, Sam Onwuemeodo described the government’s narrative as cock and bull story saying that it was illogical for the former governor to loot the items so described. He described the present government as working on an agenda to discredit Okorocha and his legacies.
“The government should disclose or publish the proof of ownership of all they claimed they had recovered. All these cock and bull stories have become irritating. If Governor Uzodinma was not demolishing Okorocha’s projects, he was invading warehouses in his government’s desperation to malign Okorocha.
“And the question is, how would all these help governor Uzodinma in the governance of the State. We have been reluctant to use the word clueless, but the government’s actions and inactions have given reasons to be described as such.
“And if Okorocha wanted to hide any item, could he have done so at a Warehouse along the busy Aba road and opposite one of the biggest markets in Owerri, the Alaba International Market?
“And if after 8 years of being governor, what the government could claim to have been looted by Okorocha were street light gadgets and cartons of tiles then, those who invaded the warehouse should cover their faces in shame.
“It should also be recalled that the Hon. Jasper Ndubuaku-led Recovery Committee had long before now, invaded the same Warehouse also on the claim that it was recovering government’s properties, which ended as hoax.
“Administration is not an easy business. If the governor is finding it extremely difficult to break even or break through, he should consult his brother, Okorocha, to tell him how he did it and to a large extent, succeeded, inspite of the meager resources of the State. The best approach is not destroying Okorocha’s legacy projects or chasing shadows, but to ask questions.”