From Everest Ezihe, Owerri
As the officials of Imo State Government(IMSG) and her populace are basking in the euphoria of hosting, President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR , the Command in Chief of the Armed Forces, next Tuesday for one day official visit of the Eastern Heartland State and commissioning of some legacy projects built by Senator Hope Uzodimma’s led Shared Prosperity and 3 R mantra administration, Mr. Lawrence Ekeh (Luzek) has described the visit as an economic waste and financial recklessness on the part of the State government.
Ekeh who’s an author and London trained Economic expert stated this in a press statement he issued on Thursday (8/09/2022) vehemently condemning the visit and made available to news men in Owerri.
According to the Ngor okpuala born social critic and Financial Expert “what self-aggrandisement is this? Inviting the President of Nigeria to Imo State because the State House of Assembly Complex was rehabilitated is totally financial recklessness. Or because some kilometres of federal roads have been reconstructed and rehabilitated is obviously an unnecessary expenditure” he insisted.
He pointed out that, when Governor Sam Mbakwe(late) was setting up all the factories in the state that created jobs, he did not invite Alhaji Shehu Shagari(late), the then President and Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces and similarly, when Governor Achike Udenwa built a government Secretariat and other legacy projects he never invited President Olusegun Obasanjo for commissioning.
Ekeh insisted that the visit of President Buhari to the state for purpose of commissioning those projects will cost Imo State huge financial and human resources that the stringent economic situation does not warrant.
He noted that the money could be better use in rehabilitation and reconstruction of many deplorable rural roads in the state as well as payment of gratuity to so many pensioners who are dying out of frustrations and lack.
Swiftly, Hon. Declean Emelumba, the state Commissioner for Information and Strategy said that any one describing the President’s visit as an economic and financial waste is not in tune with the realities of power play and gains of such visit.
Emelumba informed that during such visits there are always an address by the Governor to the President including private audience in which there must be litany of problems confronting the State and the President as a father cannot afford not to make presidential commitment of solving one or two or even more, how then can you quantify this or these ?.
The Commissioner further revealed that the Presidential visit is equally an opportunity for assessment and inputs which is for the betterment of the state.
However, it’s pertinent to recall that this is the third time the President is visiting the state officially since inception of this administration. The first time the President was represented by Prof. Yemi Osibanjo, the Vice President but the second time President Buhari came though the visit was thrilled with criticism both for his traditional dressing and the projects he commissioned.