Eke Ukwu Owerri must go * Unfolds his vision for Imo people

Imo State Governor, Owelle Rochas Okorocha, has insisted that the popular Eke Ukwu Owerri market, the ancestral market of Owerri indigenes, must be relocated, saying the market has constituted a nuisance by defacing Owerri city and creating filth within the metropolis.
Okorocha who spoke to journalists at the Nigeria Union Of Journalists (NUJ) Press Centre in Owerri,  recently said  the argument that the  market is an ancestral market that has stayed up to 200 years, does not mean that its present location is right.
He added that soon the state government will shut down Douglas road to enable it carry out the relocation of the market to Egbeada, a small town close to the city, stressing that this measure is in line with his administration’s urban renewal programme aimed at decongesting Owerri and making it attractive for investors.
He said the he intends to build a 12 -lane road in the city, pointing out that his Rural Road Programme will be reactivated in September 2016.
He said the ongoing removal of illegal shanties in Owerri metropolis is geared towards beautifying the city which is in line with his vision to modernize the city.
The Governor said soon mechanics and artisans will be moved out of Owerri to Avu community in Owerri North, while all carpenters and wielders will be relocated to Naze community.
In apparent reaction to the demolition of the fence of the building belonging to former Minister of Interior and one of the opposition leaders in the State, Emmanuel Ihenacho, Okorocha said it is strange that “someone could go to court to stop the demolition of the fence of his house”
He added that some of his properties in Owerri will be affected by the ongoing exercise.
Okorocha said it is unfortunate that some Imolites are not cueing into his vision stressing that he is the most misunderstood governor of the State.
He recalled that before he emerged as Governor of Imo State in 2011 the people were disenchanted with the then administration and despite his persistent efforts to transform the state since then, his intentions and vision for the State has been clearly misunderstood.
“There was dissatisfaction in Imo State before I came, there were complains. There is need for a shared vision because I am a radical governor to effect radical change in the State” He said.
He appealed to the people of the State to cue into his vision explaining that since he became governor  five years ago, he has undertaken brand new projects aimed at transforming the State despite the odds and challenges. He stated that poverty rate has reduced in the State and his achievements have surpassed that of previous administrations.
Okorocha fingered the security of the State as one of his major achievements since he emerged governor. He said the era of kidnapping and armed robbery is over in the State as he is committed to ensuring the emergence of a brand new Imo State for future generations to enjoy. He said his free education programme has become a remarkable success , just as he has succeeded to erect brand new infrastructural projects such as roads across the nooks and crannies of the State.
The Imo State governor explained to journalists that his reluctance in paying salaries to workers is based on the down turn in the economy of the nation as a result in the drop in oil prices which affected the federal allocation Imo state received.
He said when the national economy was booming and the State had enough funds, he promptly paid pensioners in the State.
Okorocha stated that suddenly the pension suddenly got over-bloated and this was responsible for the delay in payment of pensions in recent times. He said during the era of the Ohakim administration, pensioners gulped about N305 million naira only to increase to over N1 billion naira in recent times.
He said some of the workers in the state are indolent, revealing that workers salaries eat up about 90% of the finances of the state.   He said the 70: 30 percent sharing formula between labour and the state government has clearly exposed to Labour the pains he underwent in paying salaries to workers.
He denied claims that Imo State is indebted, stating that the State is not owing any bank aside the bail-out funds advanced to the State by the Federal Government which was successfully restructured to be repaid within a period of 20 years.
The state governor explained to newsmen that the Imo Transport Company (ITC) will be relocated to Owerri- Aba express road. . He said since the new management committee was set up, the State government receives N20 million naira monthly, a monumental increase from the N2 million naira monthly it received from the sacked management consultant.
The Imo State governor called on the people of the South East to strongly support the President Muhammadu Buhari led administration.  He expressed concern that the South West and South-South are taking the upper hand in its support for the present federal government.
He added that the war on corruption embarked on by the Buhari government is real as stolen monies are being returned to the coffers of the federal government.
He took a swipe at the PDP, describing it as the worst thing that has happened to the nation., calling on the people to be patient with the Buhari administration.

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