Delta State Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, has urged the immediate past Governor of Rivers State and now Minister of Transport, Mr. Chibuike Amaechi, to face the judicial scandal battering his image and refrain from passing the buck to innocent persons.
Okowa, who exonerated himself from the former governor’s ordeal, wondered why the Rivers State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) was desperate to rope him into the matter, and expressed dismay that APC was unperturbed by its dwindling fortune but engaged in unprofitable character assassination.
APC Chairman in Rivers, Davies Ikanya, had alleged that Governor Okowa, his counterpart in Rivers, Nyesom Wike, and others collaborated to run down Amaechi, knowing that he currently enjoys the support of President Muhammadu Buhari where he is playing a prominent role as Minister of Transport.
Ikanya said the duo of Okowa and Wike were behind the allegation levelled by Justice Sylvester Ngwuta and Justice Inyang Okoro, two justices of the Supreme Court, who claimed that Amaechi attempted to bribe them to pervert justice in favour of his party’s governorship candidates in Rivers and Akwa Ibom states respectively. Okowa described the Rivers APC’s allegation as not only “false but misleading and a calculated attempt to smear his hard-earned reputation.”
The Minister of Transport had been enmeshed in deep crises in the last two weeks. The Movement for the Actualisation of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) in conjunction with the Biafra Independent Movement (BIM) fingered him and two other ministers, including his counterparts in Labour, Chris Ngige and Science and Technology, Ogbonnaya Onu, as clogs in the realisation of the Biafran Republic.
Two days later, the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) fingered him again as the arrow head in the misfortune befalling the Igbo race. While the group’s leader in Delta North Zone, Chinedu Amaefieobu, supported by the Zonal Commander of Security, Ignatus Agili-Ajama, lambasted the minister for denying his kinsmen and sacrificing them on the altar of mediocrity, they hailed Chief Ralph Uwazuruike for upholding the tenets of the late Odimegwu Ojukwu and working hard to realise his aspirations for Igbo people.
Okowa, who sppke through his Chief Press Secretary, Charles Aniagwu, in Asaba yesterday, wondered why Ikanya was not bordered about “the dwindling fortunes of his party in Rivers rather than embarking on a wild goose chase”, describing him and the allegation as not only spurious but laughable. “Ordinarily, we wouldn’t have joined issues with a … party Chairman like Ikanya, but in order to set the records straight, it is pertinent to state that Governor Okowa has no hand in the latest scandals swirling around the Transportation Minister.
“As governor of Delta State, Okowa is too busy delivering on his SMART Agenda to be enmeshed in such petty accusations of orchestrating any accusations against the transport minister. “How is it possible for anyone to imagine that two respected Justices of the Supreme Court were told to lie that Amaechi made attempts to influence their judgements in his party’s favour?
“Rather than encourage the former governor to defend himself, the Rivers APC is busy looking for people to rope into its inglorious adventure. Davies Ikanya should grow up. We, therefore, call on the general public to disregard the said publication as there is no iota of truth in it,” the statement said.