Former governor of Imo state, Dr Ikedi Ohakim has described as misleading newspaper publications accredited to the Secretary to the Government of Imo State, Sir Eche George against his person, describing the publications as uncanny, unfounded and baseless.
Ohakim in a widely circulated advertorial which was made available to Nigeria Moment by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Collins Ughalaa, wondered how he could be joined in an intra-party affair and the so-called coalition against Governor Okorocha in his APC by the SGI when he, Ohakim is neither a member of the party nor planning to join it. According to the then governor, there was urgent need to correct what he called the blatant lies contained in Eche's advertorial and to set the record straight, adding that officials of the Okorocha government will stop at nothing in peddling lies against Ohakim who served Imo State selflessly.
Ohakim stated that it was an absurd show of ingratitude and greed as contained in the piece that he promoted Eche out of his Accounting career line and made him a Permanent Secretary instead of Accountant General, insisting that it was the most untrue in the history of Ohakim's stay in office as Imo governor. He recalled that Governor Okorocha had upon assumption of office in 2011 illegally sacked 13 Permanent Secretaries, Directors and Deputy Directors, stressing that appointment of Eche as Accountant General by Okorocha was for a 'purpose'. Though he pointed out that it is the prerogative of the Governor to make appointments into the state's civil service and to relieve those undeserving of their appointments only in line with the rules. Governor Ohakim chose to promote him to the position of Permanent Secretary even when he did not deserve it, which is clearly a career growth for him, a position higher than that of the Accountant General; but because of his inordinate desire for filthy lucre he desired the lower position of Accountant General and now bears grudges against Dr. Ikedi Ohakim for not appointing him Accountant General.
It stated further that the unbridled selfishness and desire for the filthy lucre was the main reason Imo State is today a humanitarian disaster, a situation where public assets including monies have been converted to private ones. It was therefore greedy of Sir Eche George to have dreamt of being appointed the Accountant General of Imo State when there was no vacancy in that position when Ohakim became Governor in 2007. “For the records, Governor Achike Udenwa, Ohakim's predecessor, had appointed Chief Paulycap Ajoko, the Accountant General of Imo State on the eve of Ohakim's inauguration. Ohakim in spite of political pressures refused to remove Chief Ajoko as Accountant General in obedience to the civil service rules and democratic tenets. That has been the grouse of Eche against Ohakim which motivated him to mobilize against Ohakim's reelection in Ngor Okpala LGA. Sadly, it was Governor Okorocha whom Eche is worshipping today that flagrantly removed Chief Ajoko and appointed Eche Accountant General in his place. Those who occupy top public positions in Imo State government today do so not because they are the most qualified but because they belong to the Agburu Rochas”.
Ohakim argued that Eche was not the most qualified person at the time" to be appointed Accountant General as he claimed, though Governor Ohakim did not make that appointment. Available records prove that Eche's predecessor, Chief Ajoko, had a Degree in Accountancy from the University of Nigeria Nsukka (UNN) about 26 years before his appointment as the Accountant General, and a Master's Degree in Banking and Finance prior to the same appointment, whereas Eche had lower qualifications.
It is noteworthy also that Ohakim did not appoint any Accountant General throughout his tenure in obedience to the civil service rules and therefore could not have refused or neglected to appoint Sir Eche George the Accountant General of Imo State which he had longed for. Ohakim inherited Eche's predecessor who was ebulliently more qualified but he was maliciously and irregularly removed by Eche's godfather, Governor Rochas Okorocha, before his retirement and replaced him with Eche for reasons not unconnected to Eche's rumoured heavy financial contributions and mobilization towards Okorocha's governorship election in 2011.