The court created Governor of Imo State, Hope Uzodinma, on Thursday visited President Muhammadu Buhari for a second time since securing Imo mandate through a controversial Supreme Court judgement that is still contentious, begging for a refund of state funds spent in reconstructing federal roads by the former governor in the state.
Hope Uzodimma in a media interaction with State House Correspondents after a meeting with the President at the State House, Abuja, monitored from Lagos, had explained that the state needs the for the reconstruction works done on federal roads in Imo to improve the state’s current financial situation for governance and development. He added that the refunded money will help the government in the payment of pensions and salary arrears.
The creative governor noted the Imo government is expecting a refund of is about N32 billion.
Some stakeholders in Imo have expressed shock over Uzodinma’s rush to Abuja to beg Buhari for funds within a short time he inherited a government that has a legacy of smooth developmental governance under the people’s Governor Emeka Ihedioha, who was quietly rebuilding Imo State with available funds with going cup-in-hand to Abuja to beg for funds. The good works done by former Imo governors which extended from Rochas Okorocha into the Ihedioha administration is what Uzodinma ran to Abuja to beg for refund. These governors did their works without complaints of financial stress, but Uzodinma in less than two months is creation financial status of helplessness and beggarly instinct in Imo.
The seeming embattled governor, indicated his commitment to growing the state’s Internally Generated Revenue (IGR), adding that he will be reviewing the state’s tax regime.
Uzodinma was on January 15, 2020, sworn in as the governor of Imo State after the Supreme Court delivered a controversial judgment that nullified the election of Emeka Ihedioha as the governor of the state. The judgment is currently under review at the apex court. Until the Supreme Court delivers judgment on the review suit, legality and legitimacy of Uzodinma’s status as governor remain questionable. This may have culminated in hazy uncertainty in the Imo polity.
Some Imo stakeholders were of the view that it may not be out of place for Uzodinma to be using the Aso Rock shuttle as political diplomatic to solicit President Buhari’s support in the review suit at the Supreme Court under the guise of seeming help for Imo State.