The governor intends to use a stakeholders meeting to name and shame sponsors of terrorism in the state.
Ex-Governor of Imo State, Rochas Okorocha (L), and the incumbent governor, Hope Uzodinma (within Nigeria)
Governor Hope Uzodinma of Imo State says Senator Rochas Okorocha and former governorship candidate of the Action Alliance (AA), Uche Nwosu, have been named by suspects as sponsors of kidnapping and banditry in the state.
Nwosu is Okorocha’s son-in-law. He was recently arrested inside a church and flown to Abuja.
Okorocha and Uzodinma have been locked in a war of words, with the former calling the latter a national embarrassment recently.
In a statement, Oguwike Nwachuku, Chief Press Secretary to Uzodinma, said Okorocha and Nwosu should be more concerned about clearing their names.
“For the avoidance of doubt, Okorocha and Nwosu have been specifically mentioned by suspects who are in the custody of security agents, as being sponsors of kidnapping and banditry in Imo State, using their relationship with former ex-militants to perpetrate the crimes,” the statement reads.
“Rather than clear their names, they appear bent on using both overt and covert means to blackmail the Police High Command, which legitimately arrested Uche Nwosu.
“They are also actively seeking to dent the image of the fine security officers attached to the Governor of Imo State.
“Plot by those believed to be fueling insecurity, particularly kidnapping, banditry, arson and cannibalism in Imo State ahead of January 4, 2022 Imo Stakeholders meeting got to a head on Monday with false news of the alleged arrest of the security officers attached to Governor Hope Uzodimma.
“Governor Uzodinma, it is believed, will use the stakeholders meeting to expose the identities of those behind insecurity and other forms of criminality in Imo State.
“This has prompted Imo citizens to become more curious to discover the identities of those undermining their peace and prosperity. Thus, the current media frenzy by both Rochas Okorocha and Uche Nwosu appears to be strengthening the notion of their culpability.
“To discredit the government and undermine the peace which the Governor has achieved so far, as was evident in the large number of Imo people who came back home from around the world for Christmas and New Year festivities, the duo have resorted to publishing falsehood yet again about security officers in the State Government House.
“Their claim of the arrest and detention of a certain Shaba, whom they falsely allege to be the CSO to the Imo State Governor is strange as the Governor’s CSO is not known by the name of Shaba both officially and otherwise.
“In addition, no security officer in the Governor’s security team was either arrested or is currently unaccounted for. As such, the entire story can best be described as a poorly scripted fabrication aimed at misleading the unsuspecting public,” the statement reads further.
Okorocha and Uzodinma’s feud has its roots in the build-up to the 2019 governorship election in Imo.
Okorocha, who governed Imo from 2011 to 2019, wanted son-in-law Nwosu to succeed him. However, that didn’t work out as planned.