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Presidency gets involved in Imo APC crisis, meets Okorocha

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Yemi Osibanjo

The Presidency through the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, on Wednesday, held a closed-door meeting with the Senator representing Imo West Senatorial District, Rochas Okorocha, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, with the intention to settle the feud existing between him and the current governor, Governor Hope Uzodimma in Imo State.

Okorocha, a former governor of the state has been caught up in a political feud with his successor and fellow member of the All Progressives Congress, Governor Hope Uzodinma.

Responding to the State House correspondents shortly after the meeting, Okorocha said, “The whole thing to me sounds like a movie, a joke, a dream that does not reflect any practical reality, but I am a father, I’m a leader of that state and I am trying to make sure things don’t escalate beyond control.

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“But for what has been done to me, I am human; I can bear it just for the purpose of peace to reign.

“I am still waiting to understand the reason why all the attack because before, the allegation was that the money used in building was government money.

“Now, it has changed; it is no longer the issue of government money, but that it is built on the green verge and allocation where Government House was supposed to be built.  I am still waiting and only time will tell.

 “But let it be known that I was Rochas Okorocha before governor and I am still Rochas Okorocha after governor.

 “Government House never made me.  I was who I was, before becoming governor.  Rather, I would say that becoming governor was a sacrifice on my own part.”

Okorocha added, “But talking about the properties in question, the schools, the East High College, Rochas Foundation College, the Royal Spring Palm Hotel and the university, these outfits are all charitable outfits for the Rochas Foundation.

“And I brought them back home as a sign of investment to encourage investment in my own state, where I come from.”

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crimewatch

South-East govs joking with regional security, says ex-Imo senator

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A former member of the National Assembly, Athan Achonu, has accused South-East governors of trivialising the region’s security.

Achonu, who represented Imo North at the 8th Senate before he was sacked by a Court of Appeal judgment in Owerri, urged Igbo governors to take over Eastern Security Network from the Indigenous People of Biafra and reform it.

The ex- senator was reacting to the jailbreak in Owerri, as well as the attack on the Imo State Police Command headquarters and the killings in Enugu and Ebonyi States.

He said that the youths were angry with the governments because of lack of employment and business opportunities.

Read Also: Full list: NUC grants licences to 20 new varsities

Achonu, who said that he was championing a movement for Igbo billionaires to bring their investments home, said that without security and infrastructure, manufacturing businesses would not thrive in the South-East.

He said, “There is problem in Nigeria. The situation is terrible. Our economy is losing control. Unemployment rate is unbelievable. The worst hit are South-East and South-South. The youths have now been turned into Yahoo boys and drug addicts.”

“Our group will make a presentation to all the South-East governor this April on the need for Igbo billionaires to invest at home. Without local government autonomy, no true democracy will happen in Nigeria.

“South-East governors are joking with Igbo security. They are making the biggest mistake of their lives. They can take ESN and legalise it. There is no security in Nigeria. Kidnapping takes place even in Buhari’s village. Nowhere is safe in Nigeria again.”

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crimewatch

Imo jailbreak: FG to pardon escaped inmates who return voluntarily -Aregbesola

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Fugitives who escaped from the custodial centre in Owerri, the Imo capital, will be granted amnesty if they return voluntarily, the Minister of Interior, Mr Rauf Aregbesola, has said.

He said this during the inspection of the centre on Tuesday after it was attacked by unknown gunmen.

During the attack, over 1,880 inmates were said to have escaped while 36 stayed back.

According to the minister, escape from custody is unlawful, and a crime.

He explained that if those who escaped return willingly, they will be pardoned from a trial for unlawful escape.

However, they will still be made to face a trial for their actual offence and serve their jail term, if convicted.

He said, “Unlawful escape from custody is a crime but the government in its magnanimity will grant amnesty to prisoners who willfully return.

Also Read: BREAKING: Gunmen raze another Imo police station

“They will no longer be charged with an unlawful escape but only for the initial crimes that took them to prison. So we urge all escapees to return before they are caught on the run.”

The minister also described the Monday jailbreak at Owerri Correctional Center and the razing of the Imo State Police Command headquarters as the worst in the recent history of the country.

The ex-governor of Osun State who said that the attackers operated as terrorists, ordered the relocation of Owerri Recreational Club and other structures which he said were posing as a security threat to the premises of the Owerri Custodial Centre.

He said that during the EndSARS protest, custodial centres in Ondo and Osun states were attacked, while an attempt to attack that of Lagos was repelled.

He regretted the targeting of custodial centres in recent times, saying that the federal government would soon roll out adequate measures to protect them.

Aregbesola vowed that those who perpetrated the attack would be apprehended and prosecuted.

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BREAKING: Gunmen raze another Imo police station

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Gunmen on Tuesday razed the Ehime Mbano Local Government Area Divisional Police Headquarters in Imo State.

This development came just a day after unknown gunmen attacked Owerri Correctional Centre and the Imo State Police Command headquarters, freeing 1,884 inmates and razing over 50 vehicles.

Tuesday’s attack came few hours after the vice president, Yemi Osinbajo, the just sacked Inspector-General of Police, Muhammed Adamu, and other Government functionaries visited the state to inspect the level of damage on the attacked security facilities.

On arrival, the gunmen freed all the suspects in detention before setting the Police Divisional headquarters ablaze.

Our correspondent gathered that the gunmen operated without any resistance from policemen.

Also Read: BREAKING: Defend yourself against IPOB members – Uzodinma

A source said, “Gunmen this evening razed Ehime Mbano LGA police divisional headquarters. On arrival, the gunmen freed the suspects before wrecking the havoc.”

A police spokesperson in the state, Orlando Ikeokwu, said that he could not confirm the development when he was contacted by our correspondent on Tuesday evening.

But a senior police officer who does not want his name in print said that the Command’s hierarchy was saddened by the latest development.

The PUNCH reports that gunmen had between February and March razed Obowo, Abo Mbaise, Ihitte/ Uboma and Isiala Mbano Divisional Police Headquarters, killings three cops and injuring others.

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