Civil Society blasts Imoke for buying N13bn ‘Dead’ Aircraft


The profligacy of Gov. Liyel Imoke of Cross River state has come under heavy criticism by Civic Duties Awareness Initiative (CIDAI), over the purchase of a N13 billion 'dead' aircraft from Rivers state government.

CIDAI's Executive Director, Mr. Emmanuel Ulayi, also accused the governor of corruption and insensitivity in the face of dire poverty and massive suffering of Cross Riverians especially following heavy flooding in some parts of the state.

Ulayi, who is also from the state, bemoaned the wasting of over N13billion in buying a 'Tokunbo', scrappy aircraft from Rivers state government when social services has ground to a halt with rising unemployment.

Gov. Rotimi Amaechi had in an interview Tuesday, disclosed that he had sold one of his three aircrafts to Imoke for N13billion and was using the money to build a minimum of 10 primary schools in his state.

According to the statement, at a time other state governors were thinking of how to empower their people economically and educationally, Imoke was more concerned with his personal comfort and that of his family.

He also expressed fears that with the revelation by Amaechi that the smallness of the plane was dangerous to fly in given climatic factors, “it would not be out of place to state that Gov. Imoke was on a mission of group suicide and

place unnecessary burden on the state's finances.”
 The executive director further lamented that the Imoke government is the only state to abandon its citizens to their fates in Borno with many of them losing all their sources of livelihood and have being turned into beggers in Abuja with no tangible assistance from the state government.

He added that the plight of the Borno escapees was further worsened by the fact that the state liaison was non-operational as it has no liaison officer.

Speaking further, Ulayi berated the governor for not making strong argument for more ministerial slots for the state despite the fact that Cross River state was the first state to support President Goodluck Jonathan in becoming Acting President and subsequently President.

The group called on indigenes of the state to rise up to the challenge of good governance and accountability if the state must progress and appealed to them to start working towards an alternative as the 2012 polls approaches.

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