*It’s a lie â€” Govt
By Eric Ugbor
ABA â€” AN Action Congress, AC, governorship aspirant, in Abia State,Â Prince Paul Ikonne, has alleged that the son of Abia State Governor, Mr. Chinedu Orji plotted to assassinate him when he declared interest to contest the 2011 election, but the state government has denied the allegation, describing him (Ikonne) as unserious person, who is only seeking relevance.
Prince Ikonne in an interview with Vanguard in Aba, was reacting to rumours that he was fronting for the state Governor, Chief Theodore Orji on the platform of the AC and that he was not a serious contender for theÂ position.
He said, â€œwell,Â if people had thought that I was fronting for Governor Orji based on my closeness with him, well they might not haveÂ made any mistake but the incident that happened in Abia Transport Company, when I was the General Manager must be an open one for everybody to know that I cannot be fronting for somebody and his son will lay ambush to kill me.â€
Prince Ikonne narrated that immediately he pasted his posters to run for the governorship of the state on the platform of AC,Â that the son of Governor Orji,Â Chinedu Orji, allegedly hired thugs and some Ibeku boys and gave them guns and machetes to go and assassinate him.
He said, â€œthey laid ambush for me and as early as 5a.m., they were already at the Abia Transport Company, where I was the General Manager then, seized all the mobile phones of the security men on duty as well as those of drivers that came early to pick their vehicles that morning, so that they would not be able to communicate with me not to come to the office.â€
According him,Â â€œso many people were beaten and some were seriously injured because I declared my interest to run for the governorship of Abia. So there is no way I can be fronting for a man and his son will be attacking me. His son who believes that Abia belongs to him or Ibeku people arranged those boys to come and kill me.â€
Further he said, â€œmy problem is not only what he did because my life belongs to God,Â but my problem is that those guns he gave to those boys, to collect it back will be a problem and tomorrow they will turn around to say that there are kidnappers here and there, and yet they are the same people that are empowering these boys, giving them guns in the name of politics.â€
Government debunks allegation
But in a swift reaction, the state government, through the Special Adviser to the Governor on Electronic Media, Mr. Ugochukwu Emezue, described the allegation as false, saying that Ikonne was only lying to be recognised.
â€œWhat value has Paul Ikonne that would make one to want to assassinate him? He is a serial liar with nuisance value, check his antecedents,â€ he retorted angrily.
Emezue also dismissed rumours in the state that the Governorâ€™s son owns the New Idea Construction Company handling some road projects in the state.