PDP Candidate for Njaba State Constituency in the 2019 elections, Hon. Charles Abia, has called for the inclusion of Hon Uju Onwudiwe in the planned probe of the past administration of Rochas Okorocha by Gov. Ihedioha, following her comments that probing the past administration will amount to a witch hunt. He made this call during an interview session with journalists in Owerri. Here are the excerpts of the interview:
Question: May we meet you Sir for the purpose of this interview?
Answer: My name is Charles Abia, I was the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for Njaba State Constituency for the 2019 elections. As you are aware, the issue regarding the election of March 9th for the State House of Assembly and the Governorship is still in court. I am challenging the declaration made by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), which we think was made in error. Of course, its being challenged at the Elections Petitions Tribunal and I think that very soon the court will be ruling on that matter.
Question: What is your take on the member representing Njaba State Constituency in the 9th Assembly Honorable Uju Onwudiwe urging Governor Emeka Ihedioha not to probe the immediate past administration of Rochas Okorocha
Answer: A lot of people from Njaba will not agree with you that she is representing them. If you have observed, you will see that she has been sponsoring that interview, trying to push it to various media houses and local tabloids. Shes been trying and the aim for her is very clear that she doesnt want a probe at all. She has been crying more than the bereaved. You should even be worried why she is the one sponsoring publications everywhere telling Governor Emeka Ihedioha not to probe the Rochas Okorocha administration. I mean why is she doing that?
Is it not possible she maybe part of those that participated in the looting of the treasury we had in the past 8 years? Thats why she has been the one shouting and talking about it everywhere. Its beginning to get sickening. Thats why I will tell you that a lot of people in Njaba will not agree with you that she is representing them.
There are issues with erosion, there are issues with flooding and there are issues with health institutions that have actually been run down in Njaba State Constituency; erosion issues and so many issues. Do you hear or see her pushing issues like that in media houses or local tabloids?
She has been all about everywhere in the past two weeks talking about Governor Emeka Ihedioha and how he should not dare probe her paymasters in the persons of Rochas Okorocha and Uche Nwosu. It shows you that there is something she is afraid of and she probably has soiled her hands. She is afraid of her shadows.
Question: Are You Accusing Her Of Not Paying Attention To The Flood Menace In Njaba?
Answer: I have not accused her. The thing is, if you represent a people, every once in a while you should go to the people for a review. The people of Njaba are supposed to do her appraisal. She represents her pay masters who are currently fighting a battle against Imolites.
Question: May I remind you that she is the first lawmaker of the Imo State 9th Assembly to a raise a motion on the floor of the house, calling on the State Government to urgently looking into the case of the erosion menace?
Answer: Well, that is the funny thing. First of all, the truth is that the erosion issues in Njaba did not start today. It has been there these past four years. She was there in the past four years. What did she do about it?
She heard that there was something going on with erosion control in Ideato and she started her lackluster window dressing. Listen, Njaba people cried out because the people saw her moving around with the defeated Governorship Candidate of the Action Alliance, Uche Nwosu. They have told her the things Njaba people are passing through and she was not doing anything, claiming to be representing them; She came up to do what I will best describe as an unfortunate dance, since then what has happened?
You have seen the action that is taking place in now Ideato with erosion control. The House member there pushed for it. You can see also there are some actions now in Oguta.
Uju Onwudiwe has not been able to get the governor to come to Njaba and see the erosion site. She is more preoccupied with representing the failed interests of her paymasters.
As far as we are concerned in Njaba, she does not represent us. I am from Njaba. If you wish, you can actually go and interview the ordinary man and woman on the streets in njaba, and they will tell you that Uju Onwudiwe does not represent Njaba. She represents the interest of her paymasters in the persons of Uche Nwosu, and Rochas Okorocha, who are actually fighting with the people.
You saw what happened few days ago, with the recovery made by Jasper Ndubuaku, Chairman of Imo State Task Force on the Recovery of Movable Government properties. You could see what was loaded in those containers; government properties they had looted, and people almost mobbed the daughter of Rochas Okorocha who is incidentally the wife of Uche Nwosu.
Imo people have pitched themselves against them. Those are Uju Onwudiwes pay masters and those are the people she represents. She does not represent the people of Njaba. The people will tell you the same thing.
Question: Sir with your statement, are you trying tell the Governor to go ahead with the probing of the immediate past administration?
Answer: Is it me that will tell the governor, the people of Imo State are crying for it actually. They want Okorocha and his cronies probed. Look at the recoveries. Our resources were plundered.
Rochas Okorocha in eight years raped Imo State. There was a complete destruction of our common heritage. He and his cronies converted lots of properties belonging to the government to their personal use: Lands, buildings, Cars etc.
They even went as far as taking rods, seats belonging to the government, acquired with government funds, building porsche hotels and estates everywhere, and someone, who claims to be in her right senses thinks there shouldnt be a probe? God forbid! There must be a detailed probe.
The meaning of probe is to ask questions. Theres nothing like witch hunting about probe. Imolites want questions to be asked. In any case, if you are not guilty why should you be afraid of probe? I think in the probe there is also need to check Uju Onwudiwes bank account, to check her properly because an Igbo proverb says where a child is crying and pointing hand, if the father is not there then the mother may be there. Incidentally Uche Nwosu has not been the one calling against the probe; it has been Uju Onwudiwe doing so. It is possible she is one of those hiding the money for them. So I think there should be a probe. It is an enquiry.
One of the many reasons Imolites voted for Gov. Emeka Ihedioha is because they wanted a Governor that will actually come in and probe the Okorocha administration. They felt that this man destroyed our common heritage. Imo had been a place of pride, but this man caused a lot of destruction, a lot of disaster. So people voted massively against his third term agenda, which was to install his son in-law Uche Nwosu. People voted against that and the reason they did that was to recover things this man had stolen within the 8 years he held sway as Imo governor. It is not me calling for the probe as it were, except that I am joining myriads of well-meaning Imolites asking for a detailed unraveling of what happened to our common wealth under Okorochas watch. I am therefore worried that the outgoing member of the House is now the person calling against the probe, sponsoring loads of publications.
The question is: what is so wonderful about not probing Okorocha, that is concerning a house of assembly member or someone who claims to be a House of Assembly member? Why is she so concerned about the probe of the immediate past administration? Why is it sending shivers down her spine? Unfortunately for her, she cannot succeed because she is one person against the rest of Imo people who think that there should be a probe. She should be probed for saying there should not be a probe because it suggests she may not be entirely clean. She is obviously trying to cover up something but I know the man, Ihedioha, will certainly launch a detailed probe.
If Rochas Okorocha and his co-travelers, which also includes Uju Onwudiwe are free of any guilt then so be it, we will congratulate them. In fact, we will apologize to them.
Question: What Is Your Take On The State Governor Signing Executive Order on The Treasury Single Account?
Answer: It is indeed a welcome development. The Treasury Single Account signing is a wonderful thing and has been well received by the generality of our people.
One of the things it does is to plug leakages in government revenue. There are lots of leakages in internal revenue collection. You see that before now, there were about 250 accounts belonging to the State. People collect revenue here and there and then the monies are not properly accounted for.
But with the TSA, it means revenue of Imo state will be consolidated in one account and its a wonderful idea. In fact it shows character on the part of this administration. A criminally minded administration will be thinking of how to pick money here and there but this man says lets get our revenue consolidated. I mean, is it not worrisome that Imo state is about the least in terms of revenue generation in the entire south east? Last month (June), what we got was about 300 million naira. That was the total internally generated revenue of Imo State. We have salaries to pay, pensions to pay. We have infrastructure to do. So this is a wonderful thing.
I commend Governor Ihedioha. It is indeed a step in the right direction and will help this administration a lot in terms of having funds for projects.
For now we are beginning to see a government that is responsive. You will know how wonderful a day will be from the morning usually. If you want to build a sky-scrapper, you will pay very close attention to the foundation but if you want to build a bungalow, you wont do so much on the foundation so Ihedioha is setting a wonderful foundation because he is building a sky scrapper. He has a very wonderful vision. A governor that wants to pander to media sentiments will rush to do projects even if they are poorly done, so that people can clap for him but he is not given to frivolities. He is taking his time to set a solid foundation so that he will now be able to put up a proper structure that Imolites will be proud of.
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