IMO GOVT MAY PROBE UDENWA
The simmering political bickering between Governor Ikedi Ohakim and his predecessor, Chief Achike Udenwa has come to a head as the Imo State Government has declared that it would most likely probe the former governor over his role in the commissioning of uncompleted projects before he left office in 2007.
The multi-billion naira projects include the Imo State University Teaching Hospital, Orlu International Market and Sam Okwaraji Stadium, Orlu.
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo commissioned the projects, at the behest of the former governor, even when jobs on them were still ongoing and contract sums paid.
Political Adviser to Imo State governor, Chief Rex Anunobi, said there was need to probe the former governor given the fact that the projects were hurriedly commissioned when they were not completed. He said it was inconceivable that 'the so called signature projects of the previous dministration took eight years to execute and yet were not completed before commissioning.'
Anunobi wondered why Udenwa has been accusing Ohakim of abandoning those projects, which had already been scheduled as completed and commissioned.
'Apart from the fact that those projects were sited in only one town in one local government, how come they commissioned the projects only to now start crying of marginalization?' he submitted. The political adviser who spoke in a radio programme in response to allegations that Ohakim was parochial and profligate, challenged the accusers to name what they did for Imo in the last eight years outside abandoned projects.
He noted that contrary to insinuations that opposition against Ohakim existed in Imo, 'only one, two or three people are conspiring to destabilize the state. They are not opposition but enemies of the government. 'Their wives, their PAs and even their Chief of Staff for eight yeas are in the government of Ohakim. So who is the opposition?' he queried.
Anunobi also regretted that those sponsoring the current attacks on the governor failed woefully in the eight years they were in charge and now want 'to destroy an innocent man for selfish ambition.' He boasted that Ohakim had within three years done what they could not achieve in eight years. 'Ohakim has attracted from the Federal Government projects worth more than N200 billion. These enemies of government are throwing tantrums because they could not achieve that in two tenures,' he said.
On the allegation that the governor was tampering with local government funds, Anunobi who had been a two-time chairman of Nkwerre Local government, described it as product of ignorance and hatred. He said those who made those sweeping allegations were not privy to how local government funds are administered through the Joint Allocation Committee (JAC), and advised them to endeavour to get their facts right.
It would be recalled that operatives of Economic and Financial Crime Commission last week stormed Imo State and allegedly picked up one commissioner as they declared one of the governors top aide as being on the run
According to Chief Anonobi, the governor had never tampered with local government funds but had even been at the forefront in battling corruption at that level of government.