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Gov Okorocha Warns Bishop Chukwuma Over Workers Salaries

By Austin Echefu

Governor Rochas Anayo Okorocha on Thursday warned the Bishop of Enugu Anglican Diocese, Most Rev Emmanuel Chukwuma, not to talk like a politician or a card carrying member of a political party, saying that priests should be purveyors of truth and nothing but the truth.

Governor Okorocha spoke in Owerri through a press statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Sam Onwueodo, on Thursday in response to the statement credited to the Bishop on Wednesday, where he had condemned the Governor for recklessly spending state fund and not paying workers’ salaries and pensioners’ pension.

The Bishop made the comment in a press conference in Enugu on Wednesday, saying that President Muhammadu Buhari should quickly  call the Governor to order. The Bishop also called on the All Progressives Congress (APC) to also look into the manner the Governor has been ruling Imo State and redirect his steps.

“I want to say that the condition of civil servants in Imo State and that of the pensioners is very pathetic. And to make matters worse, Governor Okorocha instead of doing the needful is busy moulding statues with taxpayers’ money and partying here and there.

“I’m urging President Buhari and his party, the APC to call him to order. To make matters worse he even said the other day he has established ministry of happiness. He is making caricature of governance.

“So, President Buhari should not keep silent over this; he should tell Okorocha to stop moulding statues. He should use that money to pay workers and pensioners”, said the Bishop.

He also appealed to all the Governors in the country to prioritize the payment of workers’ salaries and pension, saying: “We are right now in the season of Christmas and it is very sad that some workers have not been paid. It is not right at all, and for that reason I’m appealing to the conscience of the governors to make issues of salary and pensions a priority.

“Very soon, as we enter into 2018, a lot of politicking will start; so, I advise that politicians should display a sense of maturity; this should not be a time for meaningless cross-carpeting from one party to the other to achieve selfish aim.

“They should stabilize the political process; where there is zoning it should respected. I believe that in so doing, soonest the presidency will also be zoned to the South-East because they have been marginalized for so long.”

But Governor Okorocha took exception to the Bishop’s comments, saying that he spoke like a politician and a card carrying member of a political party. He said: “the Bishop had spoken not only as a politician but as a card-carrying member of a political party and not as a Bishop”.

He noted that “politicians are most of the times associated with blackmail, propaganda and marketing of falsehood, but ordained ministers of God are believed to be agents of truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.”

The Governor challenged Bishop Chukwuma to take him up on his claims that he had surpassed the achievements of his predecessors put together.

“And now that a highly revered Priest in the caliber of Bishop Chukwuma has come up with such worrisome claim, we want to humbly ask him to take us up on our own challenges or claims. Let him make a trip to Imo State and see things himself since it seems he does not believe the ones he read in the print media or the ones he has watched on the televisions.”

He added: “Imo is working, courtesy of Governor Okorocha. Our opponents in Imo are the few elite with unhindered access to the media and their pursuit is the 2019 guber election in the State which they will also lose like they lost in 2011 and in 2015.

“Indeed, we have also paid workers’ salaries upto November and the payment of the December salary is on as we write.

“Governor Rochas Okorocha’s achievements as governor in less than Seven years have exceeded or superceeded the achievements of all the administrations before him since 1976 when the State was created, put together.”

Speaking on the iasue of pension, the Governor said he had “cleared all the arrears in December 2016, and began to pay monthly as from January 2017. We have paid upto March. And we are set to pay them another three months. The outstanding months will also be paid. That is all. We do not tell lies in Imo.

“We are not up to date in the payment of Pensions with the outstanding months but we are upto date in the payment of Salaries like we had stated.

“We challenge our Bishop to find out the truth or otherwise of these claims. The elite in question and their aides are 24 hours on the social media, ware-billing and transporting falsehood”.

Source: 247ureports.com

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