Immediate past governor of Imo State and Senator for Imo West, Chief Rochas Okorocha, has appealed to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to unseal the Rochas Foundation College and other ventures belonging to him which they had been shut in view of the subsisting Court judgment on the matter.
Okorocha urged the anti-gratf body to take into the fate of the students who he said were mostly orphans and should therefore, not be allowed to suffer because of the action of the present government in the State.
“it is not all about Rochas Okorocha and the family, but about humanity and posterity”, he stated.
DAILY ASSET gathered that the agents of the anti-graft agency (EFCC) from its office in Enugu on Tuesday, July 23, 2019, about 6am, stormed the Rochas Foundation College Owerri, with more than three thousand students, and most of them, orphans, and sealed the College.
The EFCC operatives also sealed the East High College and Academy, Owerri with Uloma Rochas Nwosu as the proprietor, among other investments belonging to the former governor and family.
However, reacting to the action of the commission (EFCC), the former governor in a statement by his media Aide, Sam Onwuemeodo dismissed the action as a sympathetic scenario stressing that the PDP government in the state and all Chieftains of the party who felt politically displaced from 2011 to 2019 by him had come together to launch war against him and his family and APC members.
“And that was why they needed INEC to declare their candidate winner even when he didn’t meet the requirement. Unfortunately, they have instigated certain agencies like EFCC into taking some hasty actions following flood of petitions by them”.
The former governor who faulted the approach of the EFCC argued that there was no prior invitation to the Managements or Proprietors of the Colleges and other establishments sealed by the Commission as expected before such action.
“To the best of our knowledge too, these Colleges have not been under the investigation of the Commission. We have had the feeling that the Sealing of the Colleges or any other structure as the case maybe, would have been based on the outcome of their investigation in which the managements or the proprietors would have also been interrogated”.
Onwuemeodo further stated that sealing the colleges and other properties because they belonged to Rochas Okorocha’s family before investigation is what is difficult to comprehend especially when most of these establishments had preceded the governorship tenure of Rochas Okorocha adding that the Rochas Foundation Colleges had existed in Imo and in several states of the Federation including Plateau, Kano, Sokoto, Kaduna, Oyo, Bauchi and so on, years before Okorocha’s governorship.
“What is happening in Imo at the moment is not governance. It is a total war against Rochas and his family, APC members, members of other parties and opponents. They said they want to make the state uncomfortable for opponents and they are doing it with recklessness”.
It should also not be forgotten that there is a subsisting Court Order to this effect. And we believe that the Commission’s office in Enugu is aware of the Court Order in question as it concerns the Commission and Okorocha’s investments.
The EFCC is a highly responsible Institution and our appeal is that it should not be incited against Okorocha and family and should equally take cognizance of the Court Order in question.
“Senator Rochas Okorocha and family believe strongly in the state and have relocated most of their businesses to Owerri unlike those who do not love the state and have nothing to show that they have a stake in the state,” the statement stressed.
Gunmen Kill Three As They Abduct Eight In Sokoto Village
Three persons have been killed while others sustained varying injuries as bandits invaded Soro community, Binji Local Government Area of the state on Monday.
The state police Public Relations Officer, ASP Ahmad Rufai, while confirming the attack, disclosed that some gunmen suspected to be bandits launched an attack on the Soro community but men of the command with the support of military operatives swiftly moved in and successfully repelled the attack.However, the police spokesman said the bandits out of frustration, set some houses on fire as a result of which three of the residents lost their lives while a few others sustained various degrees of injuries. The PUNCH learnt from sources in the affected village that the marauders regrettably successfully abducted several other persons.“ Eight people, who are mostly women were abducted and carried away on motorcycle by the bandits,” a local hunter disclosed .Some community members who spoke about the incident informed The PUNCH that some vigilante groups who carried out a reprisal attack on a Fulani community led to a situation that forced the police commissioner, Ali Kaigama, to intervene and initiate a dialogue among the residents of the affected areas.
Freed Journalist Narrates Ordeal in Kidnapper’s Den
By David Torough, Abuja
A journalist with The Pavilion Newspaper, Moses Ogaga , who was recently abducted described his experience in the hands of his abductors as horrible.
Ogaga was kidnapped along with 13 others on September 17, in Benue.
He, said, although an undisclosed amount of money was paid by family members before they were released, no man should take the glory except God as he said, only God’s grace and mercy kept them alive.
Narrating his ordeal to DAILY ASSET, Ogaga stated that their vehicle ran into the kidnappers numbering about 6, carrying sophisticated weapons, who shot sporadically in the air with their faces masked.
He said that the criminals broke some portions of the vehicle’s windscreens, held passengers on-board captive and guarded them into the forest, where they were severely tortured.
“The abductors who were suspected to be nomadic Fulanis communicated among themselves in Fulani language but speak the common broken-English to their captives; and have cattle mooing around in the nearby bushes and the cattle were always moved to a closer range to wherever we were moved to.”
“When we were asked to declare our tribal identity, we were so discretional; it was later gathered from our captors that if any was found to be a Tiv, Agatu or Igede person from Obi LG specifically, it would have been deadly.”
He stated that while in the forest, their abductors ensured that any communication to their family members or friends was not in any other dialect but the common broken-English and was restricted and targeted at payment of ransom only.
“ We were stripped of everything in our pockets and given no food or water for the first two nights and days and we were severally moved from one spot to another through the nights and days; ordering us to lie face down, drenched in the mud, beaten by pests and the heavy rains in spite the corporal punishment and we became so weak and tired and felt hell while on earth,’ he lamented.
He disclosed that ransom for the victims was not the same but dependent on the amount accepted by the kidnappers, using based on their judgment to rate victims differently and the power of bargain from the respective rescuers.
Ogaga further hinted that his case was bad because he was found with an NUJ identity card and was believed to be government functionary and instrumental to castigating their operations, adding that two of his SIM cards and a 3-sim Tecno touch-light phone were not returned to him by the kidnappers.
He faulted the security architecture in the country and lamented that the security officers on highway check-points have turned their priority on financial gains from commercial vehicle drivers instead of protection of lives and property.
“And except proactive and tactical security measures are deployed to nip this ugly trend to the bud, we are vulnerable and left at the mercy of the perpetrators of this heinous act,” he reinstated.
He maintained that while in captivity, there was no security intervention of any sort, “no police, no soldier or the villagers attempted in any way to rescue us.”
New Kwara Police Commissioner Vows to Deal With Cultism, Kidnapping
From Alfred Babs Ilorin
The newly posted Commissioner of Police to Kwara State, Victor Olaiya has vowed to deal with monstrous issues of cultism and kidnapping in the state.
Olaiya, who assumed office as the Police Commissioner in Ilorin, the state capital on Monday, September 25, 2023 told the officers in the Command to brace up and work to reduce the incident of criminality in the state.
While addressing the command’s strategic managers, Olaiya said that he strongly has determination to deal ruthlessly with all manner of criminals in the state, regardless of their nomenclature.
In a statement signed by SP Okasanmi Ajayi, Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) on Monday, Olaiya declared his total abhorrence to laziness, negligence, and armchair style of leadership..
The Commissioner, an adherent of the rule of law said that he would use the community policing strategy in line with global best practices to flush out the criminals from the state.
Olaiya, who hails from Lagos State, had in his 31 years in the Police service served in various states of the Federation including Imo, Plateau, Oyo, Bauchi, Abuja and Benue states.
” Victor Olaiya, a strong believer in serving God through humanity and an unrepentant defender of the fundamental rights of the citizens,” the statement said.
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