Why I embarked on Urban Renewal Programme – Gov. Rochas Okorocha

                                                                   PRESS RELEASE

- speaks on the slain Priest & son’s rumoured death

Governor Rochas Okorocha has given reasons behind the Urban Renewal Programme of his administration, also called “Imo My Pride”, stating that apart from making Owerri, the Capital of the State, one of the best in the Country, the programme is aimed at attracting investors and making Owerri a tourist Centre.

The governor gave the hint while briefing Government House Correspondents on Wednesday, September 6, 2017, adding that the Urban Renewal Programme is on course and also added that for one to make an Omellete, an egg must be broken.

“Also we want to use the opportunity to inform the members of the public to disregard rumours making round the state with regard to Ekeukwu and whatever it represents, those things are social media rumours and does not represent practical realities”.

“The issue of Ekeukwu was taken beyond the scope it represents and I still maintain that the removal of that market was the best thing that has happened to Owerri Capital City and has brought sanity to the City”.

“Before now the headquarter of all Criminal activities was at the Ekeukwu and as we progress we want to live like other Cities in the world, in decent society markets of that nature must be placed at a proper place and not right in the centre of the city where it does not only constitute nuisance but also promotes criminal activities”.

“This will make our State a tourist centre and will encourage investors to come into our land, we shall continue with the urban renewal as we widen the roads, distill the gutters, relocating markets and making sure that Keke Operators are no longer in the streets of Owerri City”.

“To say that no provision was made for the traders is not true. Ekeukwu as it stands has about 1,600 shops, today Imo State government has provided over 11,000 shops. In order words, the entire Ekeukwu and all other markets that will soon go cannot occupy all the shops that we have built. Adequate preparation was made and we have been on this thing for the past five years and traders know that they will one day leave that place. Politicians went to court without the consent of the traders and got an interim junction which had expired over one year and the property was adequately revoked and gazetted before the action was taken”.

“Social media has been used for the unwarranted attack on my government and mentioning my son as been dead, is the height of it. I want to appeal to members of the public to disregard anything heard on the social media. I want to appeal to politicians to stop this hate politics and face issues rather than attacking persons”.

“It is rather unfortunate that some politicians from Owerri who are on the other side of the divide have politicized the death of the ten year old boy and are now crying more than the bereaved and recently they behaved like educated illiterates by the acts they did at Ukwu Ekwema where they were reported to be calling on their dead forefathers. This is unfortunate and must be condemned”.

He also added, “Recently, we heard of the murder and the wicked act that led to the death of the catholic priest in Orlu and a native of Osina in Ideato North LGA. We as a state have condemned this act and I have directed that the people concerned must be fished out and the police has gone to work and we are happy to announce that it took no time for a meaningful arrest to be made, that has indicated the killers, as it stands now it is obvious that the kingpins or those related to the killings may already be at the police custody. Investigation is still going on and the CP is reporting to me as they make progress in the matter”.

“We are assuring Imolites and Nigerians that no criminal found in the state will go unpunished. We sympathize with the family and the entire Catholic Church. We seriously assure the public that the culprits will be brought to book as soon as possible. We are on the matter and the truth will soon manifest”.

Sam Onwuemeodo
Chief Press Secretary to the Governor


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