By Chukwudi Nweje
Abia State Government has condemned the alleged threat to the life of Mr. Obinna Ichita, a member of the state House of Assembly representing Aba South State Constituency.
Commissioner for Information, Chief John Okiyi Kalu, called on relevant security agencies in the state to thoroughly investigate the allegation to get to its root.
Ichita, an All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA), legislator, had alleged that some unnamed individuals are threatening his life over his political activities within the state.
The commissioner said that the administration of Governor Okezie Ikpeazu placed premium on freedom of expression for all citizens and protection of lives and property.
“We wish to unequivocally condemn the alleged threat, if at all it exists beyond the imagination of the APGA legislator. We also call on relevant security agencies in the state to thoroughly investigate the purported petition by the Lawmaker. The administration has never been and will never be associated with political killings or harassment of citizens based on their opinions and political views even when such views are sometimes considered too toxic and beyond the threshold of globally acceptable standard of freedom of expression, rather the administration continues to receive accolades from within and outside the state for being the most peaceful in Nigeria with all political views and orientation accommodated.”
He described as malicious the allegations by the lawmaker that a World Bank project fund of N27.4billion has been paid in full by the World Bank to the state government and was allegedly misappropriated.
“It is desperately malicious and/or a hallmark of ignorance for a state legislator to claim that a World Bank project fund of N27.4billion has been paid in full by the World Bank to the state government and insinuate possibility of misappropriation whereas the practice is for such funds to be held in a project account supervised by the bank with contractors payments released to them on the basis of agreed milestones and no objection certificate from the World Bank itself. It is elementary for a state legislator to know that the state government cannot pay out one kobo from that account, even if it wishes to, without approval and concurrence by the World Bank.”