Posted by Okodili Ndidi, Owerri and Okorie Uguru | 22 December 2018 | 1,882 times
National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, and Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State were yesterday locked in a fresh spat after the state government allegedly denied APC the use of Dan Anyiam Stadium, Owerri for the flag-off of its governorship election campaign.
Oshiomhole branded the governor’s action anti-party and derided his style of governance.
Although Okorocha is an APC member, he is vehemently opposed to the party’s governorship candidate, Senator Hope Uzodinma, whose election he has threatened to work against.
The governor, who is supporting his son-in-law, Uche Nwosu, for the governorship race on the platform of Action Alliance (AA), fired back at Oshiomhole, dismissing the allegation that he denied Uzodinma the use of the stadium as untrue, adding that only Oshiomhole could believe it.
Okorocha and members of the state cabinet boycotted yesterday’s campaign of APC.
Oshiomhole said: “For the workers who no longer know what a pay day looks like, I bring a message of hope. “When a governor will look at the face of his people and say there is money to do other things but no money to pay those who are working for the government. “I bring a message of hope that appointments into your government will be made on merit and not on family connection. “I bring a message of hope that when we talk of happiness, we will not domesticate it in the hands of a sister; that the happiness of the great people of Imo State will be the primary purpose of government under Senator Hope Uzodinma. “I bring you a message of hope that in constructing buildings and building roads, they will be based on due process. “One contract will not be awarded to three people. If it must be awarded, it must not be awarded to in-laws; it will be awarded to genuine business men and women of Imo State…”
In a swift reaction to Oshiomhole’s allegation, Okorocha, speaking through his Chief Press Secretary, Sam Onwuemeodo, said: “For those who know Chief Hope Uzodinma very well, they won’t be surprised that he could come up with this false claim on the issue. Only men like Adams Oshiomhole would believe him. “Since Governor Rochas Okorocha became governor in 2011, the Dan Anyiam Stadium has always been made available for all the political parties and candidates to use, not minding the political affiliations.
“The Stadium is the property of Imo people and Chief Uzodinma would not have been denied the opportunity of using the facility for the flag-off of his campaign if he had asked or applied for it. “He never applied to use the stadium, especially when a press release had been issued days before the flag-off of his campaign that the governor had directed that the stadium should be released free to political parties and candidates who would like to use it for their rallies or for other political activities. “As usual, Chief Uzodinma wanted to use the stadium issue to blackmail the governor and to continue to deceive men like Oshiomhole…”
•Excerpted from The Nation report
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