I’ve forgiven those who branded me Boko Haram – Okorocha
Imo State Governor, Owelle Rochas Okorocha, said that he has forgiven politicians in the state and even in the South-East who branded him “Boko Haram” because he was part of the merger that gave birth to All Progressives Congress (APC). The governor pointed out that the name-calling got worse during the campaigns for the 2015 elections, stressing that he was also called “Alhaji” in Government House.
Okorocha also said that he was accused of working with Muhammadu Buhari to Islamize the Igbo.
spoke when Senior Priests of the Methodist Church of Nigeria led by His Eminence, Dr. Samuel Kanu Uche, visited him on Wednesday, April 26, 2017 at the Government House Owerri.
He further disclosed that the Chapel he built inside the Government House was branded Mosque because his opponents did all they could to incite the people against him, stressing, the more they did all that, the more Imo people appreciated him.
He said that he was happy that what he saw that made him to take the political risk of joining the merger that metamorphosed into APC, most Igbo leaders are today seeing it, adding that he has forgiven all those behind the blackmail or those behind all the propaganda.
Okorocha also said that the situation in Imo before his governorship was embarrassing with nothing to show that Imo was a state, and with the state being associated with deities like Otamiri, Nworie, Ahiajoku and so on, but he rebranded the state which also occasioned the rumour that he was slapped by one of the deities (Nwaorie).
His words: “When I came in here as governor, it was an embarrassing situation to see that even the Government House was full of shanties. The entire environment was filthy. We had to clean up the place and made it look like a home for business.
“I have two years left as a governor. I am not building the state for myself, but for governors and citizens even yet unborn. This is the spirit with which I have come to this state.
“There was also a systematic handover of the state to deities before I came in, and I said, ‘I have come to bring light’ and that light has come with our projects scattered all over the nooks and crannies of the state. We have embarked on urban renewal and had to remove shanties and create the eight lane roads you are seeing now though with challenges from the elite. But today, people are happy”.
According to Okorocha, his government “also came and brought in federal presence by using certain strategies including provision of facilities and donating to federal agencies and forces like the Airforce, Navy, Police and Army. We have also assisted the Catholic Church to build Catholic University in Orlu LGA which is in progress. The state will also like to partner the Methodist Church to build Methodist University in the state. We have also built International Cargo Airport all in the bid to attract federal presence”.
Besides, His Eminence, Uche, had told the governor that they were in the state for two days apostolic visit to the churches, and said that he was happy with the governor’s visionary leadership, pointing out that his radical transformation of the state was commendable.
The prelate reminded the governor that those who like to share money won’t appreciate what he is doing in the state but the less-privileged who benefit from these projects and policies like the free education, will appreciate him.