The Imo State Government and a former Minister of Interior and the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Governorship candidate in 2015 elections, Capt. Emma Iheanacho are engaged in a war of words over a planned demolition of his private home.
Iheanacho, at the weekend in Owerri, capital of Imo State, had told journalist that the state government marked the fence of his No. 6, Orlu Road, Owerri, massive home, for demolition, threatening brime and stone if such rumours he heard in the past, was carried out.Sources say Lamonde Hotels, owned by the governor, Rochas Okorocha and located along the same road, was not marked as at time of filing this report.
Iheanacho, had disclosed that he came back at the weekend only to see a marked sign on the fence 'Remove', adding that all attempts to inquire from the rights quarters were not positive, as no body gave him answers.Ihenacho said he was surprised that Okorocha, who should have considered many dying Imo people, before doing such at the economic crunch, had allegedly had deaf ears.
He said: "Many citizens are dying following the unnecessary demolition of their properties and exposing them to more hardship . I plead with him to have a re-think. I feel sorry for those who are in pain already but can't talk.
"It is dangerous, ridiculous and preposterous proposition. Nothing in our constitution or laws authorizes a governor to appropriate and/or destroy the property of citizens of their state for whatever reason. It is time Imo citizens stood up to be counted. I really don't want ant problem with the state governor. I don't want my wall or house, removed. ''
Okorocha, in a reaction, in a statement on Monday, in Owerri, signed by the governor's Chief Press Secretary, Sam Onwuemeodo, advised Iheanacho to take it by faith, the same way others, whose properties were torched or demolished, did as a marked of patriotism to develop the state.Read Gov
Okorocha's reply below......
CAPTAIN IHEANACHO AND GOVERNOR OKOROCHA CANNOT ENGAGE IN WAR
The Governor, Owelle Rochas Okorocha has read with concern the media reports credited to the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) governorship candidate in the 2015 election in the state and a business man of note, Captain Emmanuel Iheanacho in which he launched undue attacks on his person.
Captain Iheanacho had claimed in the reports that his reason for the media attacks on the governor was because of the purported plan of the government to demolish his house along Orlu/Amakohia Road. And he arrived at that conclusion because he saw demolition inscription, which reads, "Remove" on the fence of his house.
In our response, we want to reiterate that the Governor, Owelle Okorocha has vowed to build a state we all can be proud of. He has also pledged to make Owerri, the state capital a model city especially when the state capital is now adjudged one of the fastest growing cities in the country. That has been the reason behind some of the construction works going on along some major roads in Owerri including MCC/Uratta road, MCC/IMSU road, Orlu/Amakohia road, Mbari road and the relocation of some markets.
And in the course of doing all these, certain structures including block outfits have been touched or removed. And their owners have always exhibited high level of understanding because they know that the governor meant well, abinitio. The whole exercise was never targeted at any particular individual.
In other words, if the fence or building of Captain Iheanacho has been affected by the construction or rehabilitation works going on along Orlu/Amakohia road or somewhere else, it would invariably enjoy the same fate others have had. It is not a personal thing as to warrant his launching media attacks on the governor. He should have even been expected to commend the governor for the good job considering the enviable level of his exposure.
Threatening fire and brimstone should not have been the best approach especially when one recalls that he had aspired to govern the state for progress.
It may also be important at this point to appeal to Captain Iheanacho to stop giving the impression that he has some scores to settle with Governor Okorocha when we are not aware of any of such scores. They are all illustrious sons of the state and should be working together for the good of the state and her people.
In the current matter, the time and resources he employed to call Press Conference and unleashed attacks on the governor, he would have used such to find out why the inscription "Remove" was there. Whether it is for the fence or the building and also find out what the government can do in the circumstance.
As a matter of fact, his approach had fallen short of expectation. He is a highly respected son of the state who also meant well for the state and her people. Therefore his approach to issues concerning the governor and the state should be that of patriotism. And not that of attacks, threat for war or that of rage.
Chief Press Secretary to the Governor.