Hoodlums Set Imo Magistrates’ Court On Fire |The Republican News


File photo

Chidiebube Okeoma, Owerri


Some yet-to-be-identified hoodlums numbering over 15 have attacked the Imo State Magistrates’ Court in Orlu, by setting it ablaze.

Our correspondent gathered that the fire destroyed all the documents in the court’s documents section before it was quenched.

The magistrates’ court shares the same premises with the state high court in Orlu.

A staff member of the court, who refused to disclose his identity, told journalists that the hoodlums fled after setting a section of the court ablaze.

He said the security men attached to the court premises were attracted by the outbreak and on coming close, saw the youths running away.

He added that nobody was in court when the hoodlums struck.

The court worker said he was not aware of any incident in the court that could have instigated the attack.

“This court treats cases like every other court in the Orlu high court. There is no development in the past suggesting the attack. The police investigation will reveal the reason for the arson,” the official said.

Journalists were not allowed to take photographs of the attacked court.

The police spokesman in the state, Andrew Enwerem, who confirmed the incident to our correspondent in a telephone conversation, said it was a case of suspected arson.

Enwerem, who said the Commissioner of Police, Dasuki Galadanchi, had mandated the Area Commander in charge of Orlu zone to commence the full investigation into the matter, said only the section housing the court’s documents were affected. (Punch)

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Imo APC Chair’s Murder: Okorocha Offers N20m For Whistleblowers


Governor of Imo State, Rochas Okorocha

Stanley Uzoaru, Owerri

Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State has promised N20 million to anyone with useful information that would lead to the arrest of the culprits who murdered the All Progressives Congress (APC) chairman of Idea to North  Local Government, Chief Sunny Ejiagwu.

The governor, in a press statement, he issued through his Chief Press Secretary, Sam Onwuemeodo, emphatically said that the murder of the APC chieftain was purely a case of assassination following the circumstances surrounding his death.

“Considering the fact that nothing was taken away from the man or removed from his car, it should not have been therefore a Case of armed robbery, and looking too at the fact that there was no sign of resistance or struggling between the killers and the victim and the method of shooting, the issue of kidnapping should also be ruled out,” Governor Okorocha said.

According to Governor Okorocha, “The man’s head and body were shattered with bullets following several gunshots just to make sure that he had no chance of being revived, and that could only be done by wicked assassins.”

Governor Okorocha, who spoke when political and community leaders of Ideato-North came to officially inform him about the gruesome murder of Ejeagwu, at the Government House, Owerri, assured that those behind the act would be brought to book.

He continued, “Last night we received a very disturbing news about the untimely death of one of our Party leaders in Ideato-North by name Sunny Ejeagwu (Ohaneze) who was murdered at about 8.00pm last night.

“We have come to a very painful moment of this our political life, to say that those who are behind the killing must be brought to book”.

“This is painful and Ohaneze(Ejiagwu) has no reason to die now. He has just been elected the Chairman of APC, Idearo-North and he is one that is loved by all, but for someone to have gone to take his life, we condemn it in its entirety and we have requested the Security agencies to fish out the killers.

“We as a government must ensure that these culprits, these wicked souls must be brought to book. We must never allow innocent souls to be destroyed or even people being killed just for nothing.”

He further added, “I’m here placing a price tag that whoever can give any useful information as to the killers of Chief Ejeagwu, this government will release the sum of N20million immediately just to make sure we arrest whoever killed this innocent soul.

“The Security agencies have been directed and mandated within the shortest possible time to produce the killers of this man.

“We are asking all Imolites to go about their businesses without fear, as security arrangements are in top gear to ensure the security of lives and properties in the state”.

The governor also added, “As politics comes up, this is a similar incident that happened many years ago wherein the same Akokwa, a notable politician was killed and it looks like it has become the character of Ideato-North to kill around that area whenever politics comes on.

“I’m yet to classify this killing as politically motivated killing. But even if that is the case, the perpetrators must be brought to book, and we shall use this to show an example that we mean business to fish out the men of the underworld,

“Therefore, I and the State government have sent our collective sympathy and heartfelt sympathy to the wife and children and the family of Chief Ejeagwu for this underserved, unmerited and wicked death that he had to go through in the hands of his murderers.

“But everyone must know that life is sacred and no one has the right to take another’s life, and whoever does that, whether now or later, must pay the prize.

“So, I sympathise with the family and government will be with this family in this their period of trials and pains. Once more, let me assure all Imolites, all members of APC that we must bring to book, the killers of Ohaneze, and not too far from now”, Governor Okorocha stated.  (The Sun)

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Imo: APC To Hold Fresh Party Congress Weekend As Okorocha Floors Coalition

Stanley Uzoaru, Owerri

The All Progressives Congress (APC) ward, local government and state congresses which could not take place when other states had theirs, will now hold on Friday, Saturday and Monday, respectively.

The ward congress will take place on Friday, while the local government and state congresses will take place on Saturday and Monday, respectively.

Governor Rochas Okorocha, who made the disclosure to party leaders yesterday, through a statement signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Sam Onwuemeodo, said the coast is now clear for the state to have her own congresses, which could not take place last time.

The court had earlier ruled that there were no congresses in Imo and directed that the congresses should be conducted in line with the provisions of the party’s Constitution and the electoral law.

Meanwhile, Governor Okorocha has lashed back at Senator Victor Umeh, following the latter’s recent attack that “only God can impeach him” in his state.

Okorocha, who reacted through Onwuemeodo, said the Anambra-born senator “is still struggling to be acquainted with the duty of lawmaking at the National Assembly.”

He said rather than concentrate on his duty at the Upper chamber, Umeh chose to attack him in the media to get cheap popularity.

He said: “Umeh has not been able to find his feet in the Senate since he was elected into the Upper Chamber of the National Assembly. He has been staggering, thinking about which leg to put forward first.

“And for this reason, he has not been getting the kind of media attention he was enjoying free of charge when he held sway as the National Chairman of All Progressives Grand Alliance, (APGA).

“Having been starved of publicity as a result of his abysmal outing in the Senate, he felt the only way he could get the needed attention from the media was by attacking Governor Rochas Okorocha and unwarranted leveraging on the impeachment moves against the Deputy Governor of the state, Prince Eze Madumere, by the House of Assembly.”  (The Sun)

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Impeachment: Carry Your Cross, Okorocha Tells Madumere |RN


Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha, has reacted to media publication credited to his deputy, Eze Madumere, alleging how he stood firmly by him in his trying moments, saying he is not duty bound to make him his successor.

Okorocha rather asked him to face his ordeals in the hands of the state Assembly.

The governor, who reacted through his Chief Press Secretary, Sam Onwuemeodo, said: “ It is left for the deputy governor and the motley group cheering him up against his boss, to state whether the governor or governors are duty-bound or under any obligation to make their deputies their successors. Or whether all the past governors in this country had made their deputies their successors. If the answer is in the negative, then, Madumere should count his teeth with his tongue.

“In responding to the accusation of gross misconduct raised against him, by the House of Assembly, Madumere used that opportunity to continue his aspersions on the man who has shown him avowed charity, Okorocha.

“He told the jaundiced stories of how he saved Governor Okorocha from “public disgrace” and also “carried his cross and bore his shame.”

He also talked about how he ‘stooped’ so that Okorocha may be ‘spared of the humiliation’ of getting incarcerated.”

The governor said in all these, Madumere could only talk about the minor fallouts of the 1999 election and, perhaps, the incident that was also part of the 2011 election when he (Okorocha) ran on the ticket of All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) and defeated the incumbent, Chief Ikedi Ohakim, of the PDP.

“All the same, it is the height of pettiness for the number two citizen of the state to begin to talk about the imaginary inconveniences he claimed he experienced during the political outings of his benefactor, but, carefully skipped mentioning the avalanche of favours, benefits, patronages and enviable upliftment he has enjoyed all these years,” Okorocha said.

Stressing on his kind gestures towards his deputy Okorocha said: “He had returned from America a long time ago, and was in Nigeria all the while. And he should be Christian enough to admit that he has remained under the mentorship and employment of Governor Okorocha.

“He also refused to state in his publication that he has benefitted from the political successes of Governor Okorocha more than any other person.”  (The Sun)

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Okorocha: I’ll Not Leave APC For Anybody |The Republican News



Imo state governor, Rochas Okorocha


George Onyejiuwa and Stanley Uzoaru, Owerri

Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha, has vowed not to leave the All Progressives Congress (APC), which he claimed to be one of its founders in the state.

He said when he took the mainstream of the All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) to join the merger that gave birth to APC, he was not under any pressure to do so, adding that he even made the move at the risk of his second tenure as governor.

Governor Okorocha, who said this in a press statement he issued through his Chief Press Secretary, Sam Onwuemeodo, added that he became the propeller of APC in the state and the whole of South East by mobilising people for the party in Imo, Ebony, Abia, Enugu, and Anambra states.

He added that he became the rallying point of the party in the overall interest of the South East and APC.
The statement said: “If Governor Okorocha did not take a good percentage of APGA members to APC, the party would not have had the kind of national spread it has today. For that reason, they called him all sorts of derogatory names which Nigerians know, including Alhaji in Government House, Okoro-Hausa and Rochas Buhari.

“When APC came for the campaign in 2015, in Imo and all the states in the South East, he was the point man. Today, APC has become the party to envy. Nobody is talking about Okorocha and Buhari going to use APC to Islamise the Igbo.
“Today, the same people who called him names have begun to market falsehood against him, including the fake story of his leaving APC for APGA. All these show the level of frustration on the side of the 10-man coalition. They are being hunted by their inglorious actions.

“One may also wish to know that while the unfounded story of the governor leaving APC is yet to dry, they have also come up with another one, that the governor is in a coma. These people do not know God and, of course, they are afraid of both the present and the future.”

Okorocha said he won’t allow his detractors to reap where they never sowed and added that their deceit would expire in no distant time.

“No landlord leaves his house for unfaithful tenants. The name Okorocha is the fibre of APC in Imo and the whole of South East. And anybody who says it is not true should tell Nigerians why it is only in Imo you have APC governor, 24 out of the 27 House of Assembly members, three House of Representatives members and one senator, in the whole of South East. Time will tell what happens in APC in Imo and the whole of South East,” the statement said. (The Sun)

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Imo: APC Appeal Committee Upholds Ward, LG Congresses |The Republican News


Romanus Ugwu, Abuja

The move by Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha, to cancel the ward and local government congresses of the All Progressives Congress (APC) held in the state has failed, as the party’s Appeal Committee has ratified the exercise.

This was even as Imo Assembly lawmakers, led by the Speaker, Acho Ihim, and some National Assembly members staged a protest at the APC national secretariat in Abuja, yesterday.

Okorocha had met President Muhammadu Buhari and the Vice President, Yemi Osibanjo, to protest alleged malfeasance during the ward congresses in his state and demanded their cancellation.
In its report, the APC Congresses Appeal Panel said based on a report submitted by Imo State Congress Committee, signed by its Chairman, Senator Abubakar Tutare, ward and local government congresses were held in Imo State.
The appeal committee further said those who wrote a petition against the congress were unqualified.
The report said: “The congress committee presented video evidence to support its position that Congress actually held in the state.”

Meanwhile, the National Assembly legislators from Imo State have dismissed the insinuation that the allied forces, consisting mainly the chieftains of the party, have defeated Governor Okorocha in the recently conducted ward and local government congresses.

Speaking after the closed-door meeting with the National Chairman of the party, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, the delegation of 24 legislators, led by the Speaker, Imo House of Assembly, Acho Ihim, claimed the governor is still the leader of the ruling party in the state.

They insisted that there is nothing wrong with the governor endorsing his son-in-law, Uche Nwosu, and dismissed what many believed was the genesis of the problem.

“We are here to reconfirm that there was no congress in all the general and certain wards in Imo State. We are here to reaffirm and demand that an announcement be made for a new date for the ward and local government congresses and we can now talk about the state congresses.

“As for our discussion with the national chairman, we want it treated as an in-house affair; but, we have affirmed our stand that we are still with our governor.

“He is the face of APC in the South East. Of course, the young man has done so well.”   (The Sun)

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Imo 2019: I’m Most Qualified To Succeed Okorocha – Madumere |The Republican News


…Imo needs my experience, says Ohakim

Stanley Uzoaru and George Onyejiuwa, Owerri

Imo State Deputy  Governor, Prince Eze Madumere, has said he is most experienced and qualified than other aspirants who have lined up to succeed his boss, Governor  Rochas Okorocha in 2019.
Madumere, who made this known yesterday in a statement signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Uche Onwuchekwa, said he has learnt more from his boss to pilot the affairs of the state and consolidate on the achievements of the Rescue Mission administration.
Madumere said he has the right spirit and well prepared to take over the mantle of leadership, adding that he has the right temperament and experience to steer the ship of the state.
The deputy governor said he has “equally gathered more experience on the job than any aspirant, coupled with his exposure to the world best standards in governance.”
Madumere has continued to receive endorsements from various political groups across the state,  including women and youth organisations.
In a related development, immediate past governor of the state, Dr. Ikedi Ohakim has declared that he will be contesting the gubernatorial election in 2019 on the platform of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP). He said the state needs an experienced person to rebuild its battered economy, saying the biggest business in the state now is mortuary business as people are dying on daily basis because of the extreme hardship.
Ohakim, who stated this at the weekend during an interactive session with newsmen in the state, said he has decided to contest the governorship of the state for a second time, based on the enormous pressure on him by well meaning Imo citizens, who have realised the grave mistake the people made in 2011.
“I want to formally declare my intention to contest the governorship of the state for a second time because of the enormous pressure brought on me by well meaning citizens after realizing the grave mistake of 2011. I am not an aspirant but a contestant. I am not desperate to become a governor, but today, Imo State does not need somebody who is coming to experiment with the state like we have had in the last six and half years now, but an experienced person to rebuild the enormous damage done to the state by the current administration, otherwise, the state will sink deeper into the economic morass that it has already found itself. ”
Meanwhile, the state Chairman of the PDP, Charles Ekekwem, has declared that there would be no automatic ticket for anybody, whether for those who are currently at the National or State Assemblies.
He said all positions will be contested for.
This was just as member of the party’ Board of Trustees, Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, has appealed to members of the party who had left over one disagreement or the other to return to the party and join other stakeholders to reclaim the Government House in 2019.

Ekekwem, who made the declaration at the stakeholders meeting held at the party`s secretariat in Owerri, stated  emphatically that nobody will be given special consideration, whether the person is currently serving as a member of the National or State Assembly as all positions must  be determined by the primaries.
He also dismissed the insinuations in some quarters that the state PDP has been hijacked by a cabal who now tele -guides the state executive on who should be given the party tickets.
“I want to state categorically that this state executive under my humble leadership will not , I repeat give any special consideration to any aspirant for any position in 2019 general election it does not matter whether they are serving members of the National Assembly or State Assembly every position must be contested at the primaries and it is the result that announced on the ground of the primaries that would be transmitted to Abuja.”

“I want to formally declare my intention to contest for the governorship of the state for a second time because of the enormous pressure brought on me by well meaning citizens of the state after realising the grave mistake of 2011. I am not an aspirant but a contestant.
He added, I am not desperate to become a governor, but today, Imo State does not need somebody who is coming to experiment with the state like we have had in the last six and half years now, but an experienced person to rebuild the enormous damage done to the state by the current administration, otherwise, the state will sink deeper into the economic morass that it has already found itself.”
The former governor said governance is not business but service to the people, noting that every sector in the state has been destroyed as the economy of the state has completely collapsed and that citizens of the state especially civil servants are finding it extremely difficult to feed their families.
“ People have always asked me what I forgot in the government house and my reply is that I am the only person who forgot something in the government house, because  governance is not business, like what we are seeing today, but service to the people.
Today, the biggest business in the state is mortuary business because people are dying on daily basis because of severe hardship. The private sector has collapsed in the state as most of the local contractors have packed up, the civil service has been destroyed and worst of all, state judges are owed about 18 months salaries, which is scandalous. I have written to the governor that if the judges are not paid by March, then I will lead a protest.
Continuing, if we do not have a regime change in 2019 it will be calamitous because security in the state will not be guaranteed because already kidnapping has become a daily affairs in the state”.
He said that as a governor he never allocated a plot of land to himself and he has only one house in Owerri which said he built in 1993 as a commissioner under the administration of late Evans Enwerem, stressing that the primary objective of governor of any state is the welfare of the people not turning the state into a private business empire while the people are left to starve.
“ No Imo people can say that his or her life is now better than it was between 2007 and 2011 during my tenure as the governor of the state because all the policies of my administration were tailored for the benefit of the people not for my personal acquisition. As a governor I never allocated a plot of land to myself and I have only house in Owerri which I had built as a commissioner under the administration of Evans Enwerem. So , my intention to be a governor for a second term is not because of material acquisition because I am satisfied with what I have. Today I pay myself N5 Million every month from my business and that it enough for me”.  (The Sun)

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