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Imo govt to probe ex-Gov Udenwa over uncompleted projects

*Projects sited in one LG

By Chidi Nkwopara

OWERRI— Imo State government has declared that it may probe the former governor of the state, Chief Achike Udenwa, over his role in the commissioning of uncompleted projects before he left office in 2007.

The multi-billion Naira projects include Imo State University Teaching Hospital, Orlu, International Market and Sam Okwaraji Stadium, Orlu.

The projects were commissioned by former President Olusegun Obasanjo at the request of the former governor, even when jobs on them were still ongoing and contract sums paid.

Political Adviser to Imo State Governor, Chief Rex Anunobi, said there was need to probe the former Governor, given the fact that the projects were hurriedly commissioned when they were not completed.

He said it was inconceivable that “the so-called signature projects of the previous administration took eight years to execute and yet were not completed before commissioning.”

Chief Anunobi wondered why Chief Udenwa had been accusing Ohakim of abandoning those projects which had already been scheduled as completed and commissioned.

“Apart from the fact that those projects were sited in only one town in one local government, how come they commissioned the projects only to now start crying of marginalisation?” he asked.

Anunobi, who spoke in a radio programme in response to allegations that Ohakim was parochial and profligate, challenged the accusers to name what they did for Imo in the last eight years outside abandoned projects.

He noted that contrary to insinuations that opposition against Ohakim existed in Imo, “only one, two or three people are conspiring to destabilise the state. They are not opposition but enemies of the government.
“Their wives, their PAs and even their Chief of Staff for eight years are in the government of His Excellency, Sir Ikedi Ohakim. So who is the opposition?” he queried.

Chief Anunobi also regretted that those sponsoring the current attacks on the governor failed woefully in the eight years they were in charge and now want “to destroy an innocent man for selfish ambition”.

He said they were afraid of the rising profile of Governor Ohakim who, within three years, had done what they could not achieve in eight years.

“Governor Ohakim has connected Imo to the national grid of politics. He has attracted projects worth more than N200 billion from the Federal Government.
“These enemies of government are throwing tantrums because they could not achieve that in two tenures,” he said.

On LGs funds
On the allegation that the Governor was tampering with local government funds, Chief Anunobi, who has been a two-time chairman of Nkwerre Local Government, described it as product of ignorance and hatred.

He said those who made those sweeping allegations were not privy to how local government funds were administered through the Joint Allocation Committee, JAC, and advised them to endeavour to get their facts right.

According to him, the governor has never tampered with local government funds, but had even been in the forefront in battling corruption at that level of government.

He, therefore, called on Imo people to ignore those he described as “vicious enemies of government” and continue to offer their support to the governor for the delivery of democracy dividends in the state.


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