Okorocha Reacts To EFCC’s Sealing Of Properties In Imo

 

The former Governor of Imo state Rochas Okorocha has reacted to the sealing of his property, by the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC).

According to Special Adviser on Media to Okorocha, in a statement, there was no prior invitation to the Managements of the Colleges and other establishments sealed by the Commission.

He explained that most of these establishments had preceded the governorship of Okorocha.

RELATED: EFCC Seals Rochas Foundation College, Other Properties In Owerri

See full statement below:

PRESS RELEASE

SUBJECT: SEALING OF ROCHAS FOUNDATION COLLEGE OWERRI WITH MORE THAN THREE THOUSAND STUDENTS & OTHER INVESTMENTS, BY AGENTS OF ENUGU OFFICE OF EFCC WITHOUT INVITATION OR INVESTIGATION.

-OBVIOUSLY, THE PDP GOVT. IN IMO INSTIGATED THE ACTION, WITH ALL THE CHIEFTAINS OF THE PARTY WHO FELT POLITICALLY DISPLACED FROM 2011 TO 2019 & GOVERNOR IHEDIOHA LAUNCHING WAR AGAINST SENATOR ROCHAS OKOROCHA, THE FAMILY AND OTHERS, IN THE STATE

  1. On Tuesday, July 23, 2019, as at about 6am, Agents of the Economic & Financial Crime Commission, EFCC, from its Office in Enugu with Hilux buses loaded with armed military and mobile Policemen stormed the Rochas Foundation College Owerri, with more than three thousand students, and most of them, orphans, and sealed the College.
  2. The Commission also sealed the East High College and Academy, Owerri with Uloma Rochas Nwosu as the proprietor, among other investments belonging to the former governor and family which the Commission Sealed.
  3. The action of EFCC with the presence of heavily Armed Military and Police Mobile Personnel frightened the students and most of them began to cry. It was a sympathetic scenario.
  4. What is obvious is that the PDP government in the State with Chief Emeka Ihedioha as governor and all the PDP Chieftains who felt politically displaced from 2011 to 2019 by Rochas Okorocha had come together to launch war against Rochas and his family. And APC members. And that was why they needed INEC to declare their Candidate winner even when he didn’t meet the requirement. Unfortunately, they have instigated certain agencies like EFCC into taking some hasty actions following flood of petitions by them.
  5. Our concern about the action of the EFCC is the approach. There was no prior invitation to the Managements or Proprietors of the Colleges and other establishments sealed by the Commission as expected before such action. To the best of our knowledge too, these Colleges have not been under the investigation of the Commission. We have had the feeling that the Sealing of the Colleges or any other structure as the case maybe, would have been based on the outcome of their investigation in which the managements or the proprietors would have also been interrogated.
  6. Sealing the colleges and other properties because they belong to Rochas Okorocha’s family before investigation is what is difficult for us to comprehend especially when most of these establishments had preceded the governorship of Rochas Okorocha.
  7. The Rochas Foundation Colleges have existed in Imo and in several states of the Federation including Plateau, Kano, Sokoto, Kaduna, Oyo, Bauchi and so on, years before Okorocha’s governorship. And the EFCC may also go to those states outside Imo to seal the rest of the Colleges.
  8. What is happening in Imo at the moment is not governance. It is a total war against Rochas and his family, APC members, members of other parties and Opponents. They said they want to make the State uncomfortable for Opponents and they are doing it with recklessness.
  9. It should also not be forgotten that there is a subsisting Court Order to this effect. And we believe that the Commission’s office in Enugu is aware of the Court Order in question as it concerns the Commission and Okorocha’s investments. The EFCC is a highly responsible Institution and our appeal is that it should not be incited against Okorocha and family and should equally take cognizance of the Court Order in question.
  10. Senator Rochas Okorocha and family believe strongly in the State and have relocated most of their businesses to Owerri unlike these PDP bigwigs who do not love the State, with all of them having nothing to show that they have a stake in the State.
  11. We want to appeal to the EFCC to unseal the Colleges and other ventures they had sealed pending the outcome of the investigation they said they have begun. And also considering the stand of the Court of Competent Jurisdiction on the issue.
  12. The students of the Colleges, most of them without parents, cannot be allowed to suffer because of the action of a wicked government in the State. It is not all about Rochas Okorocha and the family, but about humanity and posterity.

Sam Onwuemeodo

Special Adviser (Media) to the former governor, Senator Rochas Okorocha

Suspected Cultists Set Imo Police Station Ablaze

Police Dismiss Inspector For 'Shooting And Killing Kolade Johnson'

 

Some suspected cultists have attacked a police station in Obowo Local Government Area of Imo State.

The Police Public Relations Officer, Orlando Ikeokwu, confirmed the report to Channels Television on Monday, adding that the hoodlums set the station ablaze and carted away firearms.

The hoodlums were said to have arrived the police station at about 2:00 pm on Monday chased off the few policemen on duty and carted away firearms belonging to the division.

Read Also: Gunmen Invade Police Station, Kill DPO, Three Others

Details later…

Youths Protest Over Environmental Pollution By Oil Company In Imo Community

 

 

Youths from Izombe community in Oguta Local Government Area of Imo state have staged a protest at the entrance of Seplat Oil Company.

The youths blocked the major entrance of the company, accusing them of continuous environmental pollution, neglect, and failure to employ youths in the community.

CBN Tackles Abuse Of Naira Notes In Imo

CBN Reviews Capitalisation Of Tier 2 Microfinance Banks

 

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has continued its fight against the abuse of Naira notes either by spraying at events, trampling on or squeezing.

The CBNs Director of Corporate Communications Department, Isaac Okorafor, reiterated that it would clampdown on any person or group culpable of such acts.

He said this at an interactive enlightenment session with stakeholders in Owerri, the Imo State on Monday.

According to him, the currency note is a symbol of the nations sovereignty and under the CBN Act, the abuse of the Naira note is an offence punishable by law.
He further stated that anyone caught in the act will either go to jail or pay the necessary fine according to the law.

Beyond the abuse of Naira notes, he said Nigerians can now go to their different banks to exchange any old currencies with new ones following a directive given to all banks in the country to bring back to the CBN all mutilated naira notes for new notes within a period of three months.

Generator Fumes Kill Six Wedding Guests In Imo

 

Six persons have been killed by generator fumes in Mbaitoli Local Government Area of Imo State.

The incident happened at a house in Umuomumu-Mbieri community.

Imo State Police Public relations officer Orlando Ikeokwu who confirmed the incident says 20 other people who are unconscious at the moment have been rushed to a nearby hospital for immediate treatment.

He says the victims affected were guests who attended a traditional marriage ceremony in the community.

He says the commissioner of police Imo State police command Rabiu Ladodo has ordered a full-scale investigation into the incident with a view to unraveling the mystery behind the tragedy.

Court Orders INEC To Issue Certificate Of Return To Okorocha

Okorocha Sets Up 21-Member Transition Committee

 

The Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), to immediately issue the Certificate of Return to the immediate-past governor of Imo State, Rochas Okorocha, as the Senator-Elect for the Imo West Senatorial District.

Justice Okon Abang who made the order in a judgment on the suit filed by Okorocha,challengingINECs decision to withhold his certificate of return after he was declared the winner of February 23, 2019, National Assembly Election in the Imo West Senatorial District, described INECs action as lawless and arbitrary.

Justice Abang also held that Okorocha having been declared the winner of the election, INEC no longer had any legal authority to withhold a certificate of return due to him.

The judge held, once the declaration is made under section 68(c) of the electoral act, INEC has become functus officio and INEC has no lawful authority to withhold the certificate of return for any reason whatsoever.

He also held that the issue of duress is unknown to both the electoral act and the constitution of Nigeria.

READ ALSO: Imo Govt Sets Up 8-Man Committee To Probe Okorochas Administration

Justice Abang ruled that Okorocha remained elected subject to the outcome of the ongoing proceedings of the National Assembly election petition tribunal.

He, therefore, ordered, that INEC shall forthwith publish and circulate the name of the plaintiff as the senator-elect representing Orlu Imo West Senatorial District and also issue Okorocha the certificate of return as the Senator-Elect representing Imo West Senatorial District.

The judge also awarded the cost of N200, 000 against INEC in favour of Okorocha, while also ordering each of the seven defendants in the suit to pay Okorocha N100, 000 as damages.

The judge ordered the defendants to pay the costs personally to Okorocha before taking any further steps in the case.

Justice Abang added that the cost awarded against INEC would serve as deterrence to it from taking any future unlawful action.

INEC had refused to issue a certificate of return to Rochas Okorocha on the grounds that its returning officer who presided over the election complained to it that he declared the results under duress.

Ihedioha Inaugurates SSG, Vows To Ensure Separation Of Power

Imo Election: 47 Parties Vow To Challenge Ihedioha's Victory
A file photo of Imo State Governor-Elect, Emeka Ihedioha.

The Governor of Imo State, Emeka Ihedioha, says his government will respect the principles of separation of power by ensuring the duties of the executive arm of government do not hamper that of the legislature and Judiciary.

He said this at the swearing-in ceremony of the newly appointed Secretary to the Government of the state, Uche Onyeagocha and the Chief of Staff, Chris Okewulonu at the Government House Owerri the Imo State capital.

Read Also: Abel Diah Re-Elected Taraba Assembly Speaker

The governor stressed that his administration will adhere strictly to the Rule of Law and follow due process in order to restore sanity to the state.

Consequently, he advised the newly sworn-in government appointees to discharge their duties diligently, while calling for the support of Imo indigenes as he promised to run an all-inclusive government.

Imo Assembly Speaker Acho Ihim Resigns

 

The embattled Speaker of the Imo State House of Assembly, Acho Ihim, has resigned.

He resigned on Tuesday, days after 21 lawmakers in the Assembly passed a vote of no confidence on him and thereafter, asked him to step aside.

Calls for Ihim’s impeachment were hinged on a 10-count allegation bordering on gross misconduct, misappropriation of house funds, negligence of duty and illegally subduing legislative activities.

Read Also: Imo Assembly Deputy Speaker Resigns

Following the resignation, Lawman Duruji has been appointed as the new Speaker.

Court Sacks Imo APC Reps Member-Elect

Court Jails Woman Who ‘Killed’ Brother For Stealing Meat

 

A Federal High Court sitting in Owerri the Imo state capital has sacked the member-elect representing Nkwerre/ Nwangele / Njaba / Isu Federal constituency of Imo State, Ugonna Ozurigbo under the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

In a judgment delivered on Monday, the presiding Judge, Justice Tijani Ringim ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), to issue a Certificate of Return to candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Kingsley Echendu, who came second at the polls, even though the PDP nor its candidate was not a party to the suit .

The court affirmed that the plaintiff, Mr Harrison Nwadike is the rightful winner of the All Progressives Congress primary election for the Federal constituency.

READ ALSO: Alleged $40m Fraud: Court Acquits Goodluck Jonathan’s Cousin

Nwadike had filed a suit against his party the APC and INEC over the submission of Ugonna Ozurigbo’s name as the candidate of the party after the primary election in the state.

Justice Ringim however declared the primary election null and void and said that the candidacy of Ozurigbo was illegitimate and ordered INEC to issue the PDP candidate Echendu who came second in the general election with a Certificate of Return as the rightful winner of the election.

The petitioner who spoke to newsmen after the judgment said that he agreed with the court ruling that his candidate was not the rightful winner of the APC primary election in the Federal constituency, but he faulted the decision of the court which ordered INEC to give the certificate of return to the PDP candidate as the winner of the election.

He insisted that ruling will be appealed.

Four Persons Escape Death As Building Collapses In Imo State

 

 

An uncompleted 2 storey building situated at No 10 Amaram Extension in Owerri, the Imo state capital has collapsed leaving four persons critically injured.

An eyewitness say the building which has been abandoned for over 20 years collapsed on Sunday afternoon.

According to the eyewitness who was part of the rescue mission, four persons, including a female occupant were rescued from the debris and have been rushed to the hospital.

READ ALSO: Student Killed As School Building Collapse In Ondo

A shop owner in front of the collapsed building Mr Modestus Chima who was bruised in the process of escape when the building collapsed on his shop confirmed that he was able to escape through a small hole beside his shop.

The cause of the collapse is yet to be ascertained but residents of the area have blamed the collapse on the poor foundation.

Meanwhile, the Imo state police command is yet to come up with any statement on this recent development.

‘I Have Not Met Up With The Demands Of Imo State Judges’ – Okorocha

 

The Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha, has apologised to judges and lawyers in the state for not meeting up with their demands and all they have beckoned on him for.

Governor Okorocha tendered his apology on Wednesday during the inauguration of the newly built Justice Oputa High Court Complex in Owerri, the state capital.

He said, “I have not met up with the demands of the judges of Imo State, neither I have I met up with all that they have asked me to do for them.

“But I believe that by the time they come into this office, they might forget and forgive that there is something better for the future than what we are asking for today”.

READ ALSO: Okorocha Respects APC, He Has Not Left The Party – Governor Bagudu

Newly Built Oputa Complex

Listing his achievements in the state the governor said he has given the capital a facelift and urged all residents to embrace his achievements.

“I have given Owerri a new life and now Owerri is functioning.

“Our real estate is growing in a geometrical progression.

“I have turned land into capital as wealth set aside for the production of other wealth

“Only in Imo state is judged the fastest growing city outside Lagos and Abuja”

The governor whose tenure will be expiring on May 29, boasted of his administrative achievement in giving free education.

“You will remember me for the free education, for the past 8 years none of our children in primary, secondary or territory institution has paid school fees.

“We have produced more lawyers and judges which shall take after from you when the time comes.

“Our projects are there to speak for us”.

On the state health sector, he said his administration has built enough hospitals in the state adding that what is left for the incoming government is to maintain.

“Today I am proud to say that no governor would ever think about building any hospital again in the next 50 years because the issue of hospital in this land has been sealed signed and delivered”.

While rounding up his speech the governor promised lawyers and judges to clear up all outstanding salaries in the state.

“Before I leave next week I will make sure I clear all your outstanding which the CJ has reminded me about”, he added.

Imo House Of Assembly Suspends All 27 Elected LG Chairmen

 

The Imo State House of Assembly has suspended all the 27 elected local government council chairmen in the state over failure to honour an invitation to answer allegations of gross misconduct and misappropriation of funds leveled against them.

The suspension followed a motion moved by member representing Nkwerre state Constituency Mr. Chika Madumere who noted that the House had on several occasions directed the Council Chairmen to appear before it in company of their Treasurers, Directors of Administration and General Services last month but the Chairmen chose to appear alone necessitating the lawmakers to adjourn their appearance to today May 9th.

He equally added that at the resumption of plenary today, it was discovered that only the Treasurers, Directors of Administration and General Services appeared as none of the 27 local government area Chairman was present. And on several occasions the house had invited the local government chairmen through various media but at their own discretion decided to ignore the invitation of the lawmakers.

READ ALSO: Imo West Election: INEC Has No Power To Withhold My Certificate Of Return – Okorocha

The lawmakers say the idea to summon the 27 local government chairmen came after a petition was sent to the house of Assembly alleging that the chairmen appropriated funds without the approval of the Councillors.

The Speaker of the House Mr. Iheanacho Ihim therefore ruled that the Council Chairmen be suspended indefinitely while directing them to immediately hand over the affairs of the councils to the Vice Chairmen.

Mr. Ihim asked the chairmen to return all government property in their possession while urging clerk of the House to communicate the decision of the lawmakers to the state commissioner of police Mr. Rabiu Ladodo to ensure compliance.