Imo Air: Imo Govt. Floats Airline, Says It Will Boost State’s Economy

Imo Govt. Floats New Airline, Says It Will Boost State's EconomyThe Imo state government has taken delivery of the first aircraft to kick start Nigeria’s first state-owned commercial airline named Imo Air.

It was a beehive of activities at Sam Mbakwe International Cargo Airport as top Imo state government functionaries as well as Imo indigenes gathered to witness the arrival and official launch of the first aircraft in the fleet of the new state government flight operator Imo Air.

At about 11:45AM the aircraft landed from Lagos as people waited anxiously at the tarmac – the first of the five aircraft expected to run the air business for the state government.

While addressing the anxious crowd, the Imo state Governor, Mr Rochas Okorocha, said the new Imo Air is part of the plans and programmes of the his administration to boost the economy of the state and also generate employment opportunity for unemployed youths in the state.

The Governor said Owerri, Imo state capital, being one of the fastest growing cities in the country, and now with a new airline, will become visible on world map, hereby boosting the investment and tourism potential of the state.

The Governor, while fielding questions from journalists after the official launch, said Imo Air is in partnership with a Nigerian local flight operator which will manage and operate the flight for Imo state government.

He said that this is because most times governments do not do well in business and particularly maintaining an airline business.

Some dignitaries present at the event lauded the initiative of the Imo state government acknowledging its potential to address the shortfalls in air transport in the south-east region and Nigeria as a whole.

The government has promised that by April 2017, the remaining four aircraft will arrive the state.

The new airline is expected to ply Lagos, Abuja, Benin, Sokoto, and other major states in the federation.

Plane Aborts Landing After Cattle Runway Obstruction

Cattle rustlingA fully loaded Air Peace Plane, narrowly escaped tragedy on Thursday, after noticing the runway had been invaded by a bunch of cattle, just as it was about to land at the Sam Mbakwe Airport, Owerri.

A passenger aboard the flight, Mr Richard Akinnola, gave account of the incident, saying the pilot was forced to hover around the airport until the runway was cleared by the airport security.

The passengers, who initially thought the pilot deliberately aborted landing, applauded him after being told that a major disaster was averted.

The Port-Harcourt International Airport runway has once been invaded by cows while an approaching Air France plane was reported to have collided with some of the cows.

Anti-Grazing Bill

Herdmen have in recent times been warned to desist from public grazing of cattle, as it is observed to interfere with normal human activity.

The Ekiti State Governor, Mr Ayodele Fayose, had in August signed an Anti- Grazing bill into law in a bid to curtail the alleged inordinate activities of herdsmen.

Fayose-Aluko-PDPThe Governor described as “shameful” the practice of herdsmen rearing cows in cities, including the nation’s capital, Abuja

Governor Fayose also threatened to charge any cattle rearer found in the state carrying arms while grazing, with terrorism.

According to him, the state government is already working with local
government officials for the allocation of portions of land for grazing to all
local government authorities in the state, an initiative the government hopes will curtail the illegal grazing of cattle.

The Anti-Grazing Law also provides that any herdsman caught with firearms or other weapons during grazing activities would be charged with terrorism and their cattle confiscated.

Imo North Senatorial Election Rerun: PDP Demands Fairness

ImoThe Peoples Democratic Party in Imo State has challenged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to be unbiased in the rerun election to be held in Imo North Senatorial District of the state.

Addressing newsmen at the Sam Mbakwe Airport in Owerri the Imo State capital, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate in Imo North Senatorial District, Mr Athan Achonu, said that it was unfortunate the way and manner at which the APC-led federal government is using the judiciary to snatch the victory and mandate of PDP members across the country.

He was speaking upon his arrival in Imo State after the Appeal Court ruling which upheld the nullification of his election.

He said, however, that he was optimistic that he and his party would still emerge victorious in the rerun election.

He challenged all INEC officials and security operatives to live up to expectations in the rerun election as his party would not allow any form of rigging.

The PDP Chairman in the senatorial district, Mr Ralph Nwanepku, also corroborated Mr Achonu’s views.

He said that Imo North Senatorial District remains a PDP stronghold in the state and they were optimistic that their candidate would win the election again.

Nigerian Senate Lauded For Successful Ministerial Screening

Nigerian Senate Lauded For Successful Ministerial ScreeningThe Nigerian Senate has been commended for carrying out a thorough, unbiased, as well as successful screening and confirmation of ministerial nominees sent by President Muhammadu Buhari.

The former Secretary to the Imo State government and Minister Designate, Professor Anthony Anwuka, gave the recommendation while speaking to reporters at the Sam Mbakwe Airport in Owerri, the Imo State capital, upon his arrival from the nation’s capital Abuja, after his ministerial screening.

He said that the Senate, to a large extent proved to Nigerians that the screening of ministers was not a child’s play, as they showed maturity and expertise in the way and manner the screening process was carried out irrespective of political differences.

Professor Anwuka expressed optimism that the new set of ministers under the leadership of President Buhari would deliver the needed dividends of democracy to all Nigerians, contribute their own quota to national development and help actualise the real change being propagated by the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).

In similar vein, a member of the House of Representatives from Okigwe South and Chairman, Committee on Health Services, Honourable Chike Okafor, also lauded the Senate for their feat on the ministerial screening.

He said for the first time in the history of democracy in Nigeria, the Senate during the screening exercise showed absolute objectivity, pointing out that it was an improvement compared to past screening.


Okorocha Asks Political Office Holders To Cut Cost Of Governance

OkorochaThe Imo State Governor has urged all political office holders elected or appointed to show the spirit of sacrifice and cut down on the cost of governance, due to the dwindling economic situation that is presently affecting the nation.

Governor Rochas Okorocha, on Friday, at the Sam Mbakwe Airport in Owerri, the Imo State capital, told reporters that “Nigeria is in one of its worst periods in the economic history of the nation”.

He cautioned that all political office holders must sacrifice a lot of their luxury for the good of the masses.

The Governor also reminded reporters that May 29 is fast approaching, when the All Progressives Congress (APC) would take over government with high expectations.

He further assured Nigerians that the APC Government, led by General Mohammodu Buhari, would not fail its people, pledging that the administration would do its best to tackle corruption and deliver the well-deserved dividends of democracy.

Governor Okorocha, however, reiterated that his vision of providing job opportunities for the youths was still utmost in his heart in the next four years of his administration in Imo State.

He also vowed that his government would hit the ground running, after the May 29 inauguration.

Okorocha Says Suspension Of Government Activities And Rallies Will Not End Terror

rochas-okorocha The Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha, has stated that suspension or cancellation of Government activities and staging of protest rallies would not bring a solution to the menace of terrorism in the country.

The Governor said that these actions would neither persuade the Boko Haram sect to bring back the chibok girls nor end the numerous bomb attacks across the country.

Speaking at the Sam Mbakwe Airport in Owerri, the Imo state capital, on arrival from Abuja, the Governor reiterated that the nation at this period needs to seek the wisest course of action and be decisive in finding a lasting solution to the numerous terrorist attacks and the kidnap of the Chibok girls, irrespective of political differences.

He added that it was not the time to trade blames over who is right or wrong or suspend government’s activities but leaders should take responsibility for the current situation and unite to find a solution once and for all.

He urged President Jonathan to, as a matter of urgency, call the 36 state governors in a crucial meeting where the solution to the ugly menace would be discussed.

He added that if possible, the 36 state governors should relocate to Borno State to show urgency and importance in the quest to bring back the abducted Chibok girls, whose lives are more important than any political office.

Okorocha Rewards Four Imo-Born Eaglets With Cash And Property

The Imo state governor, Rochas Okorocha, has showered the sum of N1 million each to four players of the Golden Eaglets’ team and the sum of N2 million to the assistant coach who are indigenes of Imo state.

While receiving four of the players Kelechi Iheanacho, Chidiebere Nwakali, Chidera Ezeh and Uzoha Odinaka alongside the team’s Assistant Coach, Emmanuel Amuneke at the Government House in Owerri the Imo state capital, the governor congratulated the players for making the state and the entire continent proud in the just concluded U-17 World Cup competition in Dubai.

He said it is a great honour for the state under his administration, that out of the 26 goals scored by Nigeria at the competition, 9 goals were scored by indigenes of the state.

The governor said apart from the cash gift to the players and their coach, the state government is also giving them a piece of land each in choice areas within the capital city and also take up the responsibility of their education up to tertiary level.

One of the players, Kelechi Iheanacho, won the most valuable player at the tournament, expressed joy over his success and shared his experience at the competition.

The players and coach, who arrived from Abuja through the Sam Mbakwe Airport, Owerri, alongside the deputy governor of the state, Eze Madumere were driven in a motorcade round the city before moving to the Government House to meet the governor.

I Didn’t Place 1 Million Euro Price Tag

Meanwhile, the father of Kelechi Iheanacho, Mr. James Iheanacho has debunked allegations that he has slammed a one million euro price tag on his son, describing the rumour as “untrue and all lies perpetrated from the camp of his enemies”.

Speaking to our Imo state correspondent from his home in Owerri, Iheanacho Snr. said he was “shocked and surprised” to read on the pages of the dailies that he has placed a huge sum on his son adding that there was never a time he “discussed such issue with any agent or person” as regards placing such amount on his son.

He said it is obvious that such evil lie is coming from the camp of his enemies who are not happy with the present success of his son and are out to tarnish the image of his family.


APC Governors Storm Imo For Freedom Celebration Week

No fewer than 10 Governors under the new party All Progressives Congress (APC) have converged in Owerri ,the Imo state capital, for a solidarity rally as part of the activities marked out for the Imo Freedom Week Celebration.

The Governors and Chieftains of the party who arrived the Sam Mbakwe Airport in Owerri at about noon today all moved in a motor cade from the airport through the streets of Owerri to the venue of the rally at the Heroes Square in Owerri.

Some of the Governors present are the Lagos state governor Babatunde Fashola, Ekiti state governor, Kayode Fayemi, Edo state governor, Adams Oshiomole, Osun state governor, Rauf Aregbesola, Oyo state governor, Abiola Ajimobi and Ogun state governor Ibikunle Amosun amongst others.