A former Governor of Imo State, Rochas Okorocha, has described the state government’s arrest order against him as an open invitation to anarchy in Imo State.
Mr Okorocha said this in a press statement signed by his Special Assistant on Media, Sam Onwuemeodo, and made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Owerri on Friday.
Mr Okorocha was reacting to Thursday’s order by the Secretary to State Government (SSG), Uche Onyeaguocha, for his arrest over an alleged assault of a government official at his residence.
The News Agency of Nigerian (NAN) recalls that the Chairman of the Committee on Recovery of Government Property, Jasper Ndubuaku, was reportedly attacked by men said to be Mr Okorocha’s thugs.
Reacting to the incident, which trended online on Thursday, the SSG told journalists that the former governor had been listed under the state government’s security watch and placed on citizen’s arrest.
But Mr Okorocha in the release stated that the order would only cause disaffection in Imo, pointing out that residents would always defend him any time he came under the attack of his successor, Emeka Ihedioha.
He stated that the only reason given by the SSG for the order was that Imo people sympathetic to him prevented the recovery team from looting his private residence.
“The arrest order only added to their disrespect for me as the past governor and this is a very bad precedence which Ihedioha’s government is creating.
“I was in Abuja when the recovery team slapped my daughter, Uloma Nwosu, and I was also in Abuja yesterday (Thursday) when the team invaded my private residence,” he said.
Mr Okorocha said that Imo government had petitioned the Economic Financial Crimes Commission and Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission against him, but wondered why it could not allow the antigraft agencies to do their job.
He stated that the SSG had no right to issue such order against a former governor.
He said that the order would not deter him from coming to Imo anytime he deemed fit, given the huge investment he made in the estate.