By Buchi Iwuji, Owerri
Governor Emeka Ihedioha and his predecessor, Rochas Okorocha are reportedly at daggers drawn over who should take the glory for the rating of Imo state as the least corrupt state in Nigeria by the National Bureau of Statistics.
While Governor Emeka Ihedioha is busy basking in the euphoria of the report which happened during his period as Governor, Senator Rochas thinks otherwise saying the report was for a three-year period, from 2016 to 2019, during which period, Okorocha was still in power as Governor.
In a release signed by Okorocha’s media aide, Sam Onwuemeodo and made public in Owerri, the former Governor informed that it is wrong for Ihedioha’s regime which is just 8 months on the saddle to lay claims to an achievement of his the 2nd Corruption Survey Report in Nigeria which rates Imo as the least corrupt should be credited to Rochas and not Ihedioha.
“Unfortunately, the PDP government in Imo with Chief Emeka Ihedioha as governor that came in on May 29, 2019 has been sponsoring false stories on the NBS’ Survey all in an effort to take the credit of the report in question. From May 2019 when Chief Ihedioha became governor to December 2019, is eight months and not three years, the Survey covered. So, they have no valid claim to make over the report.
“The credit of the report is undoubtedly and undisputably for Senator Rochas Okorocha. It is Owelle’s trophy. He was the governor of Imo state within the period in question. The report just authenticated his prudence while he held sway as the governor of the state.
“With Okorocha’s achievements in Imo as governor, it was obvious that he had governed the State with high level of commitment and high sense of prudence. And Imo people know this fact, except the elite.
“So, Governor Ihedioha and his administration should not reap where they never sowed. Rather, they should congratulate Senator Okorocha for being a quintessential manager of personnel and resources. Before Okorocha, those who governed the state were always saying that there was no money in the State. But Okorocha produced a new song of prosperity for Imo and her people, by always saying that Imo had too much money.
“Governor Ihedioha should work hard to carve a niche for himself, instead trying to always cleverly claim Okorocha’s credits. All in all, while we give the glory of the NBS’ Survey on Corruption that declared Imo the least corrupt State in the Country between 2016 and 2019 to God, the commendations should go to Senator Okorocha and no other person” Onwuemeodo explained.
While presenting the report of the Survey in Abuja, the Statistician General, NBS, Dr. Yemi Kale stated that, the latest report (2019) was after a three-year gap, from 2016 to 2019. The report also gave state-by-state record of Corruption and Imo was named the least corrupt State in Nigeria with 17.6 percent prevalence, followed closely by Jigawa, Kano and Plateau.