BY EMMANUEL MGBEAHURUIKE,
The expression that what goes around, comes around, is very apt as the ex-governor of Imo State, Rochas Okorocha least expected that most of his last minute appointments and policies would be upturned by the new governor of the State, . He had forgetten so soon what he did to his predecessor, Chief Ikedi Ohakim on assumption of office in 2011. Okorocha upturned the 10,000 jobs given to the citizens and disolved the elected council Chairmen and their Councilors, also dropped all appointees and retrieved their official vehicles.
As if this was not enough, most of the monumental structures put in place by predecessors all erased by Okorocha’s administration. The present scenario is an interesting time in Imo, as this could be likened to pay back time. Okorocha least expected that a day like this would come, when he would be called to question in respect of some of his appointements and policies he put in place while in office. He least expected that someday this would be erased and cancelled completely by the present administration.
Little wonder, the ex-governor fought tooth and nail so as to install the son in-law, Uche Nwosu, as the governor of the state, which was met with strong resistance by Imo political stalwarts and citizens. Now that Hon. Ihedioha is taking his own pound of flesh, Okorocha is crying wolf where there is none. Okorocha, who reversed Ohakim’s policies through a state broadcast that attracted wide condenmation then, as Commissioners, Special Assistants and all appointees were either forcefully deprieved of their official cars or had them impounded in their various homes. Now that Daniel has come to judgement, Okorocha would reflect and remember 2011 while most of the then appointees would also remember with nostagia what happened then. To butress the fact that they were wrongly dissolved, the 27 Local Government Chairmen are still in court fighting for their rights through legislation. As a take off point, all the 27 Local Government Chairmen and Councilors have all been placed on indefinite suspension by the State House of Assembly, coupled with the suspension of all appointments made from March 2019 to 29th May, 2019.
This of course has led to altercation between Okorocha and Ihedioha. According Okorocha, Ihedioha has no programme for the state. Okorocha failed to effect a formal handover to the new governor, Hon. Emeka Ihedioha revealed. Speaking to newsmen, Chairman of the Inauguration Planning and Handover Committee, Barr. Chris Okewulonu said no official handover had been effected so far. “We are literally in the dark so to speak, of course the out-gone governor gave us no cooperation whatsoever. Unlike what we have had in the past during previous transitions here in Imo State and as was performed in other states, not one document has been handed over to the new administration. “Yet he makes fantabulous claims about the amount in the treasury but as at today, no single paper to back up those claims.
“Formal handover, traditionally is performed before the official inauguration of the incoming administration, therefore I will be right to conclude that this aberration is another deliberate ploy to derail the rebuilding process”. Okewulonu also said that there was never a meeting between the two principals since after the election, noting that the former governor may have left town. “What we have in Imo now can only be described as a void. But Governor Ihedioha is undeterred and indeed poised to forging ahead in his mission to rebuild the broken state.” Against the backdrop of the staccato administration prevalent in the state for almost eight years, Imo citizens are expecting a paradigm shift. The immediate past administration is noted for not following due process in administering the state and there were no clear court policy formulation, no focus, no ideology and lack of administrative acumen, almost marred the administration. There were no square pegs in square holes. The expectations for now are high as the new administration of Hon. Emeka Ihedioha is expected
to do things differently, having served in the top echelon of the nation’s legislative body. Imo citizens do not expect anything less than clear cut administrative prowess coupled with diligence in administrating projects that have direct impact on the people and not “white elephant projects.” “According to Chief Fidel Onyeneke, to whom much is given, much is expected. Imo by now is tired of ‘cut and nail’ administration. The era of what the citizens termed ‘familocracy’ and one man show, should be jettisoned by the new administration. Speaking in this direction, Dr. Harold Onumo, a political pundit, charged Ihedioha to remember all his campaign promises, commitments and campaign mantra, which is “my word is my bond”.
He also urged him to remember to run an all inclusive government and not government of exclusion. According to Ihedioha: “Ours will be a government that will promote the unity of the state, rather than accentuate the fissures that have characterized our relationship with each other in recent times”. Onumo advised the new administration to adhere strictly to open, transparent and accountable administration with due process as its hallmark. He encouraged Ihedioha to display accountability and end the era of brazenness. Dr. Onumo, a Medical Doctor by profession and leader of Okigwe Youths, urged the governor not to waste any time to translate his campaign promises into tangible goods and services to the populace.
He called on. Ihedioha to remember his social contract with the people and remain focused in implementing same. Dr. Onumo submitted that the contracts which seek substantially to improve the welfare, security, property rights, economic and social advancement of the citizens should be implemented to the letter. Healthcare delivery and quality education, according to him, must be given a pride of place. He explained that the decay in the last eight years makes it imperative that the redemptive operation kickstarts now. He however, encouraged the new administration to run away from adhoc approach to governance. Onumo challenged the new governor to create jobs, build quality infrastructure and revitalize ailing industries in the state. He charged him to reorganize the Imo security network, restructure governance, create enabling environment for private sector driven economy and pay attention to human capital development, while providing quality infrastructure. He also admonished Ihedioha to do away with the mediocre and employ the services of technocrats to occupy sensitive positions in his administration.
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