Former Governor of Imo State, Senator Rochas Okorocha, has denied speculations and some newspaper publications that a Federal High Court in Abuja has granted the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) a court order to probe and recover money and properties from him.
Okorocha in a press statement by his Special Adviser on Media, Sam Onwuemeodo, described the publication as deceitful and petty.
According to the statement, “Imo people and Nigerians, in general, woke up one morning to read in the media that a Federal High Court in Abuja presided over by Justice Ahmed Mohammed had granted the EFCC the licence to probe Senator Rochas Okorocha following the application to that effect by Barr. K. M. Okere. And that the court also ordered and listed what should be recovered from Okorocha, including cash, moveable and unmoveable assets”.
He, however, challenged whoever has a copy of the said court order to come forward with it.
Okorocha said: “First and foremost, no court including that of Justice Mohammed had ordered for the recovery of any item or money from Okorocha or even ordered the EFCC to probe him. And we swiftly challenge Barr. Okere or any other interested persons including the PDP elements in the state to publish the said court order without further delay.
“Indeed, they should do that within 48 hours. And where they fail or refuse to do that, they should be sorry for themselves.”
The former governor, however, explained that Barr. Okere as a lawyer, filed a suit to compel EFCC to probe him and that is all. “Nothing else has been done with regard to that and we stand to be faulted,” Okorocha said.
He emphasised that he has no problem with EFCC investigating him since the petition was written by Emeka Ihedioha’s short-lived government.
Speaking further on the matter, Okorocha said: “So, for anybody to go to court now to seek for an order of the court compelling the EFCC to investigate Okorocha is belated. The investigation had begun long before now”.
Gov Emmanuel Shuts Borders, Suspends Ibom Air
Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom State has ordered the closure of all borders and roads leading to the state with immediate effect.
The governor also directed that Ibom Air suspends all flight operations with effect from Sunday, March 29.
The Secretary to the State Government, Dr Emmanuel Ekuwem, disclosed this in a statement in Uyo, yesterday.
Emmanuel was quoted as directing that workers in the state should stop work with effect from Monday, March 30 for one week. “Following a critical analysis of the situation relating to COVID-19 situation, I have been directed by His Excellency, Mr Udom Emmanuel to make the following announcements:
“Salaries of state government workers for the month of March will be paid on or before Friday, March 27, 2020.
“Workers are advised to prepare to stop going to work and stay at home for one week with effect from Monday, March 30, 2020. The stay-at-home order will be strongly enforced. March 30, 2020. The stay-at-home order will be strongly enforced.
“All borders and roads leading in and out of the state are closed with immediate effect; except for transportation of food items. Ibom Air will suspend all flight operations from Sunday, March 29, 2020.
“Markets are to remain open for sale of foodstuff and essential items only,” Emmanuel said.
The governor appealed to all Churches in the state to fast t situation. and pray on Sunday, March 29 for God’s intervention in the present situation.
He added that while the one week stay at home order would be on, government would continue to monitor the situation and provide update on the coronavirus in the state.
“While the one week stay-at-home order subsists, the Akwa Ibom State government will continue to monitor and provide regular updates on any development in the COVID-19 situation in our state,” he said.
Partisan Politics: Awuse Wants Civil Servants Isolated
Elder statesman and chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Rivers State, Chief Sergeant Awuse, has said civil servants should be isolated from partisan politics in order to achieve maximum productivity.
Chief Awuse stated this in his remarks at the public presentation of the book, ‘A Handbook on Discipline of Civil Servants in Nigeria’ written by the State Head of Service (HOS), Rufus Godwins in Port Harcourt, recently.
“He stated, “By 1971/72 when we finished our secondary school, I was in Ministry of Establishment. The Permanent Secretary that they had then, if I may say, was a position that many people wanted to have. They were secure. I will want the writer in subsequent review to consider the importance of career civil servants and not political permanent secretaries.
“The reason is simple. Loyalty is always the ingredient for their appointment. But those days, permanent secretaries were judged by their ability to deliver, their ability to perform and they were more secured. I know you may not include that in your book now for obvious reasons.
“But in future, when you are reviewing, please make sure you mention that area. But remember, in every sector today, the politicians are also very important.
“The important thing is that future civil servants should be isolated from partisan politics. They should be allowed to function and use their brains. They should be allowed to do the job, irrespective of which party is in government,” he stated, noting that it was difficult to get the best out of the civil service with frequent rotation.
“Some of them are afraid to function properly because they know that the words that are used that ‘I am directed’. If you are not directed properly you are on your way out,” the elder statesman noted.
Lagos Assembly Lifts Suspension On Four Lawmakers
The Lagos State House of Assembly, yesterday, reinstated four of its members earlier suspended indefinitely over alleged misconduct and insubordination.
The Speaker, Mr Mudashiru Obasa, made the announcement during the plenary in Lagos.
The House, had on March 9, passed a resolution sacking two of its principal officers and suspending two members indefinitely for alleged misconduct, insubordination and action that could destabilise the House.
The speaker announced the punitive measures following the voice votes by members present during the plenary.
He said the principal officers that were removed included the Chief Whip, Mr Rotimi Abiru and Deputy Majority Leader, Mr Olumuyiwa Jimoh.
The speaker also announced the suspension of Mr Moshood Oshun (Lagos Mainland Constituency II) and Mr Kazeem Raheem Adewale (Ibeji Lekki Constituency II).
The offices of the four lawmakers in the House were subsequently locked by the Speaker on March 10.
Obasa said on Thursday during plenary, that the House decided to lift their suspension following the intervention by the Governor’s Advisory Council and the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
“The Governor’s Advisory Council and the National leader of our party, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, have intervened in the crisis and directed that the House should reinstate the suspended lawmakers.
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