By Arogbonlo Israel
Following the arrest of former governor of Imo state, Owelle Rochas Okorocha, by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), to answer questions over N7.9 billion allegedly traced in many banks to him, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Friday described Okorocha’s continued detention as ‘politically motivated’ calling for “Igbo leaders of thought and opinion molders to get themselves organised in the political interests of Ndigbo”.
Recall Okorocha, who is currently representing Imo west at the senate, was grilled at the EFCC office in Abuja on Tuesday, 12 April, over issues bothering on alleged corruption.
The former governor, who was in charge of Imo from 2011 to 2019, had been accused by the state government of various corrupt practices including diversion of public funds — although Okorocha has denied any wrongdoing.
However, the embattled lawmaker was released on Thursday, 15 April, after producing a ranking Senator from the Northeast as a guarantor for his release from EFCC custody.
Reacting, Ohanaeze Ndigbo in a statement recently signed by Dimm Uche Okwukwu, said the former governor’s “arrest and continued detention without trial is politically motivated and may not be unconnected with his overt declaration to run for the Office of the President of Nigeria in 2023″.
“Our believe and suspicion in this direction are reinforced by the undeniable fact that in recent times, all Igbo who declared their intentions to run for the Office of the President of Nigeria have been harassed.
“We call on Igbo leaders of thought and opinion molders to get themselves organized in the political interests of Ndigbo. There is need to settle unwarranted political quarrels; particularly between serving governors and their predecessors,” the statement partly read.