WHAT I FORGOT IN GOVT HOUSE - Ikedi Ohakim



(Being excerpt of the interview His Excellency Dr. Ikedi Ohakim granted some journalists recently)

Yes, I forgot something in government house. We have to begin to implement the Masterplan – Owerri Masterplan, Orlu Masterplan and Okigwe Masterplan. These are pending issues. We redesigned the Orlu Masterplan and Okigwe Masterplan. The Owerri Masterplan was done by Finger Hurt and Partners, it was designed to be a twin city and we started the first phase of the development by moving government to the new city. And if we had finished the Inner-Ring Road, Outer-Ring Road and the Outer-Outer Ring Road and moved the government house to the New Owerri, anybody coming to the government house through the airport wouldn’t need to come to the city. Anyone coming from Onitsha also would not come into the city. Anybody coming from Enugu would not enter the city. Owerri would have been decongested and become the best transport zoned city in the whole federation, with trees and grasses planted everywhere. Go to Calabar and see, just a snippet of what a city looks like.



In terms of salary payment, workers salary will not be part of the negotiation. By 25th of every month civil servants will get their salary. There will be trainings and manpower development for the workers. They are entitled to their wages. We will put the state back to rail. That is what I am coming to do. We will deploy our youths and make them the fulcrum of our development. We will make investment in Agriculture to the extent that we will implement our programmes like Okpara did. Our commerce and industrialization programme which we had started from Owerri West will be replicated in all the 27 local governments. And my assurance to Imo people is that we are going to create 600,000 jobs. I repeat, we are going to create 600,000 jobs. I am not saying I am going to offer, but that we are going to create. In Education we will continue with our reforms. The balance of the schools that have not been handed over to their owners will be handed over to their owners. We will bring back rural development and rural roads will be motorable again. We will banish potholes on our roads. Our maintenance structure and culture will come back. We will maintain the things we have.

But most importantly, we will bring back Law and Order. We will bring back Due Process. We will renegotiate all the debts. All the contractors that are being owed have nothing to fear. They will be in our first line consideration. We will obey all court judgements. Above all, we will also make sure we bring back equity in our governance. Luckily, I am the only person who can put my hands on the bible and tell you that I will not do more than one tenure. It is practically impossible in our laws for me to go more than four years. And four years is very short, before you close your eyes and open it four years is gone.
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