The recent story in the Independent Newspaper of Tuesday, July 18, 2019 credited to Dr T.O.E. Ekechi that dwelt extensively on the pyrrhic victory of Rochas Okorocha at the senate and other matters relating to his eight-year deliberately faithless, treacherous and deceitful reign of impunity in Imo state expectedly drew the ire of Rochas Okorocha.
From all indications, Governor Rochas Okorocha and his gang of rustlers never expected the tsunami that hit them on Saturday, March 9, 2019, when they lost the governorship election despite the deployment of billions of our commonwealth and other security arsenals at their disposal. If anyone didn’t appreciate what this calamitous loss meant to them, the recent revelations of financial sleaze, unprecedented conversion of public properties to family use, last-minute property looting and a new Guinness Book record of 250 State Government sole-signatory bank accounts, etc. should explain the blood-must-flow desperation to cling on to power for a THIRD TERM! It is, therefore, provocative that rather than seek the face of God, ask for forgiveness from angry Imo people, pay the appropriate restitution and leave quietly with his humiliation, Okorocha through his arrogant posturing and sustained blackmail is putting it to the people that truly what theyendured for eight years was a Frankenstein monster.
In picking his wars with Ekechi, Okorocha has continued to expose his frustration very carelessly, still undermining his capacity to spill more beans with privy information.
Not long ago, responding to his assertion to the well-known fact that the former Governor’s wifecontributed “to her husband’s downfall” because part of “the problem Okorocha had was that he had a wife that was more ambitious than himself”, the former Governor through his diminutive Press Secretary descended on the person of Ekechi and his humble wife with vituperating falsehood.
Only recently, reacting through one of the remnant scums of his disgraced Aburu confraternity – his Press Secretary, Sam Onwuemeodo, Okorocha once again, so typically refused to address the salient issues raised in the Daily Independent interview. Rather, he descended unabashedly on the person and personality of Dr Ekechi spewing his trademark lines of lies strenuously trying to create the idiotic impression that Ekechi’s 11-month stint with his administration as Commissioner for Information and Strategy (between November 2013 – October 2014) was the beginning and making of Hon. Dr. T.O.E. EKECHI (a High Chief of Ngor Okpala, Imo State and ARABA of Temidire Ekiti State).
Characteristically, Ekechi would have, like in other instances, chosen to ignore Okorocha’s signature-sing-song, boring blackmails of “I MADE HIM” which he has illogically deployed to blackmail respectable personalities like immediate past Deputy Governor, His Excellency, Prince Ezeakonobi Madumere, Sir Jude Ejiogu, Senator Osita Izunaso, Hon Uche Onyeagocha, Sir George Eche, Senator Ben Uwajimogu, Nick Opara-Ndudu, Engr Chucks Ololo, Chief Hillary Ekeh and in his other hallucinating moments he had extended the list to include Senators Ifeanyi Ararume, Chris Anyanwu, His Excellency, Sir Emeka Ihedioha, Particularly, anybody who had had any encounter with him while in his expired position as a governor must owe his own being to him!
But (borrowing heavily from an earlier treatise on this subject by Collins Ughalaa), Ekechi is reminded that “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it (like Rochas has been doing), people will eventually come to believe it”. It is on this note that Ekechi has resolved to confront the erstwhile Governor on this recurring lie of “I MADE HIM”, the aspersions cast on his wife, and other infantile inuendoes, perhaps once and for all.
Firstly, Ekechi’s opinion in the said newspaper report on the role of Her Excellency, Nkechi Okorocha in her husband’s predicament, it must be reiterated was representative of the opinion of the ordinary man on the streets of Imo and elsewhere in the country and abroad. Not a few people in Imo State still wonder how a full-time housewifeallegedly acquired the resources to build the large expanse estate in Owerri that even some state governments could not afford just few years after becoming the first lady of the state. This question is also extended to how she acquired sundry other properties in the state, including the WODDI Wellness Center which now sits majestically on the land hitherto housing the state secretariat at Orlu Road. Also, not a few people in the state had said that it was the wife that goaded the Governor on the failed contraption to foist their son in-law, Uche Nwosu, as his successor in Imo State. And if for nothing, the First Lady’s victory dance on the eve of the governorship election, which video was viral on the social media, is a clear pointer to what might have gone on in the private. Afterall, does the First Lady not go with the title of “oso di achi” (meaning “the one that rules with the husband”)?
May be the Governor has forgotten that Ekechi was privy to the position of Her Excellency when a former Secretary to his Government who later joined the gubernatorial race suggested that there ought to be plan B and C as fallbacks to Uche Nwosu’s candidacy. She angrily reacted that Plan A is Uche Nwosu, Plan B, Uche Nwosu and Plan C, Ugwumba Uche Nwosu! Many other instances abound to buttress Her Excellency’s hard stance on the governorship contests in Imo State.
Who sent threat messages to Chief Mrs. TOE-EKECHI to warn his husband to keep off the Ugwumba project since he wasn’t contesting the governorship election because BLOOD WILL FLOW in installing Uche Nwosu?Who suggested through her messengers that she was conveying the warnings because she loved her and that her children were too young to become orphans? Anyone who was close enough will also bear witness that it was her who claimed and boasted that the victory of Uche Nwosu was divine and has been sealed in the spirit realm.
Given the above true reflections of the former First Lady’s roles, was the Governor, justified in misplacing his frustration and aggression on the person of Chief Mrs. TOE-Ekechi?
For the records however, in advising his Press Secretary on the false statements on Mrs. TOE-Ekechi, the former Governor was full of mischief since he had encountered her on about three occasions (strictly in the husband’s presence) and therefore knows better. So also, was Her Excellency on more than five occasions (strictly in his presence)! Contrary to the rude lies, truth be told, Ekechi’s wife is one of the most beautiful, elegant, well taken care of, contented wives around. She does not at all have the form ofa bloated toad or a hot balloon like some former occupants of Government House who used looted funds to undergo panniculectomy and liposuction (cosmetic) surgery, removing excess body fats in order to look temporary but artificially trim. Chief Mrs. Tata TOE-Ekechi is naturally healthy, naturally trim and fit as a fiddle and as have been established, she could qualify as Miss Charm even after four children. An encounter with her would not in any way suggests a woman who is assaulted or enslaved in any way. Her only sin against the First Lady is perhaps because she is proudlyone of the few wives of appointees of the former Governor that took the wise counsel of their husbands to stay away from the government house to avoid obvious “contamination”. As a submissive woman she heeded her husband’s good counsel and with hindsight she must be thumping her chest now for the course she followed. Thus, while some other women were frolicking around and adoring the First Lady, Ekechi’s wife chose to stay away for “obvious reasons”. Well known to the former Governor Mrs. TOE-Ekechi consistently but politely declined most invitations to Government House functions or to accompany Her Excellency to functions including the “exclusive” ones often surreptitiously organized by the first lady (if you know what I mean)!
For a woman who has her first degree in Industrial Mathematics and Masters in Business Administration, who retired voluntarily from the banking industry after a meritorious career in two banks and who since 2013 has devoted her time to the Ekechi’s business concerns successfully as Executive Director, Finance and Administration, , it is a sorry calamity for the Governor to speak open falsehood about her even when he knows the truth. She is definitely not the kind of woman the Governor, writing through Onwuemeodo was talking about.
May it be announced, at this juncture that if this unprovoked attack on Ekechi’s wife’s person is sustained he will not play shy to wake this state up to an avalanche of revelations about the governor’s own wife that will quake our state moral foundation – if they are wise they should shut up now or see the country painted with stories from Jos to Kano, through Mina, Owerri, Lagos and Abuja!
Secondly, Okorocha through Onwuemeodo has repeatedly claimed “TOE Ekechi is a rascal. Nobody knew who was TOE Ekechi until Rochas Okorocha brought him & made him Commissioner. And drafted him into Buhari’s campaign outfit in 2015 thinking that he was dealing with a human being & not knowing that he was dealing with one queer character”. Imagine! Could that be the Governor’s mind set when he appointed him a commissioner in his administration? While he had on many occasions expressed gratitude to the governor for his gesture to serve the state ( though without his nudging) it is also a known fact that he went on to discharge his duties loyally but excellently to the admiration of Imo people and the Ministry who voted celebrated him as the “Best commissioner for Information and Strategy Ever since the creation of Imo Broadcasting Corporation”.
As a Commissioner for Information and Strategy it is on record that Ekechi intervened on two occasions with his personal funds to augment bills of the Ministry because he couldn’t stand the wickedness of the administration in withholding monies for staff welfare and remuneration. A serving Permanent Secretary, a current, and past leader of the Nigerian Union of Journalists in Imo State are living witnesses. His greatest consolation is that while the romance lasted, he never missed any opportunity to draw the Governor’s attention to the degeneration from the heroic height of a people’s governor to the abyss of infamy and ignoble condemnation.
His Excellency should be reminded that PRIOR to becoming a Commissioner in his administration Ekechi was already a successful businessman with interests in media (including out-of-home advertising), publishing, branding, commodity brokerage, solar energy, logistics and consulting with physical offices and staff in Lagos (Head office), Abuja, Benin, Port Harcourt, and correspondence offices in Accra, Johannesburg and Conakry. Most of the staff earn more than the pittance the governor’s Press Secretary earns till date.
Before becoming commissioner he was the SA/Chief of Staff to the Honourable Minister of Interior, Capt. Emma Ihenacho during which period he empowered his kinsmen in Ngor Okpala and across the state with over three hundred and twenty pensionable federal government employments – a feat he doubts the former governor came close to achieving in his eight-year misrule of Imo State. It was while in that office as Chief of Staff that he served as Secretary of a 5 man committee ( that included RochasOkorocha, Austin Papa, Captain Ihenacho, Anyiam Osigwe) at the instance of President Jonathan to fine tune an ill-feted caretaker committee for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Imo State.
In the course of the 2011 governorship election, Okorocha attended meetings at the residence of Ekechi in Owerri in the company of Senator Chris Anyanwu, Professor Anwuka, etc. On those occasions it was Ekechi who picked the bills, including ‘welfare’ bills of stakeholders who attended, not Okorocha. From that same house Ekechi provided robot calls and multi text messaging worth millions of naira at his own cost to support Okorocha’s social media campaigns. It was that same house ironically that was vandalized about 14th June 2018 after a failed attempt on his life soon after the Imerienwe declaration (which was Rochas nemesis).
Furthermore, at the heat of preparations for the 2015 Governorship election, in the company of the then Commandant of one of the paramilitary organisations in the state it was Ekechi who initiated and brokered a peace meeting with the erstwhile Brigade Commander that consequently resulted in the all-important visit of the Brigade Commander to the governor’s lodge.
Who received the Police team that came for the 2015 election re-run and paid the bills? The records are incontrovertible at Rockview hotel.
Since leaving office as Commissioner for Information and Strategy, not a few people know that Governor Okorocha had offered several appointments to Dr. Ekechi which he turned down because he wanted to be free from any encumbrances to offer the governor genuine and truthful advice.
Another fact which will be hard to deny is that the first private meeting between Their Excellencies Nneoma Nkechi Okorocha and Dame Patient Jonathan was brokered, arranged and consummated by Ekechi (free of charge) after the governor’s wife expressed worry to him at the unfriendly attitude of Mrs. Jonathan towards her after the election of 2011. That was more than two years before becoming a commissioner. The paramilitary driver and the Dame Jonathan’s aid who hails from Ihechiowa, Abia whom he scheduled to drive her to the villa are still alive and very accessible for any provoked testimony.
From previous publications. before he became Commissioner, Ekechi and his wife were already being invited to government functions and were donating millions of Naira to support the government. For example, as Special Guests of Honour at the First Lady’s August Meeting in Ngor-Okpala LGA in 2013, Ekechi and wife donated millions of naira to the Governor’s wife representing the cost of erecting houses for indigent widows. At other instances, he hosted the Governor’s wife and her entourage at his palatial home in Imerienwe with parting gifts including over a hundred solar products exclusively manufactured in Asia for his company, Alternative Electrics Limited. In 2012 during a condolence visit on his father’s death Ekechi hosted at least the former First lady in his present country home which the Governor shamelessly claim was completed after he served as commissioner in 2014.
Again, with due respect and without any intention of sounding immodest, Ekechi had already acquired his houses in Owerri, Lagos, Abuja andthe ones in his village – including the ones he built for extended family members before becoming Commissioner.Record also show that he had set up his chain of businesses before becoming Commissioner and since becoming Commissioner or leaving office he had not set up any newmajor company or building any major house. On the other hand, Ekechi has said in at least two fora that he is being owed, but on vow, never went up to the Governor or government for payment. He represented the governor officially about three times in the USA and Ethiopia without causing a scene for refund.
The above portrait certainly does not represent that of a person hitherto unknown before he became Commissioner or who was MADE by the Governor after becoming commissioner and whose current opposition to Okorocha’s excesses can be described as ingratitude. Even then, nobody has refuted an earlier claim that it was the former Deputy Governor – that gentleman, Prince Eze Madumere who prevailed on him to accept the commissioner appointment when he would not return from his trip abroad to accept the announcement which was typically made without his consent.
To the contrary it is his opinion that it is OKOROCHA WHO IS A CLASSICAL STUDY IN INGRATITUDE. A PATHOLOGICAL INGRATE. A NOTORIOUS MORBID BETRAYER. A man who soon after being sworn in, clandestinely embarked on deliberate, grandiose policy to extinguish the political fire and goodwill of all persons of influence who facilitated, directly or indirectly his becoming a governor: Chief Martins Agbaso (who graciously provided him with the APGA platform that transmuted him to power), Captain Emma Ihenacho (who was suspended as Minister and lost reappointment by President Jonathan because he insisted on supporting Okorocha against Ohakim), The Archbishop, Chief Jude Agbaso, Senators Chris Anyanwu, Osita Izunaso, Ifeanyi Ararume, Prince Eze Madumere, Dr. T.O.E. Ekechi, Chief Hillary Eke, Nick Opara-ndudu (who took him to Lagos and Abuja raising funds for his campaign), Dr Ezekiel Izuogu, The Imo Civil Servants and Civil Societies (who thought they had a better alternative in him), numerous businessmen from Imo and Anambra, Gold/Silver/Bronze Card dreamers (who were coned to part with various sums of money), Keke and Okada riders, etc., etc., etc.!
The former governor may continue to indulge in the conman game of decoy, questioning whether Ekechi went to school or not. To this one can only retort by asking him on what qualification did he appoint him as a Commissioner?On what qualification was he screened? Did the DSS or House of Assembly question hisWASCE, B.Sc, MBA, or the D.Litt (Honoris Causa) or the Fellowships of chartered professional bodies?Or were his High Chief Titles from Ngor Okpala and Temidire Ekiti State, etc questioned? The former Governor may persist in casting aspersions on his socio-economic cum political pedigree; he could shamelessly fabricate reckless and irresponsible falsehood against his delectable wife; but in all these perfidy, Nigerians, nde Igbo and particularly the bruised and angry Imolites are not deceived or distracted but would rather have him respond directly to the “koko” of the issues that have been raised against him: massive corruption, widespread last minute looting, conversion of public properties to private usage and ownership, nepotism and wickedness on a sinful foundation of familiocracy. Rochas, we are coming – with or without the EFCC!
As a mark of decency and good faith, Dr Ekechi will continue to respect the confidentiality of all Okorocha’s aides and appointees who collaborated and supported the Coalition in conception, formation or operation. It suffices to recall that in one of the earliest statements by the coalition he stated unequivocally that the opposition to Okorocha’s reign was legion and included closest aides to the governor. Was Ekechi not mocked? But has he not been vindicated by the latest DEFECTIONS? What with the open revolts of former Secretary to Government, Sir George Eche? Chief Hillary Eke? Chief Charles Amadi (Charvon)? Rt. Hon. Chinedu Offor? Rt. Hon. Acho Ihim (whom he warned the Governor through Barr. Alaribe would be on a plan to impeach him)? Dr. Ifeanyi Nwachukwu (his personal physician)? One can go on and on. As the governor continues to blackmail Dr. Ekechi through his Press Secretary, Sam Onwuemeodo who is alleged to be suffering from a COMPLEX it is mind boggling that some people certainly have NO SOUL. NO CONSCIENCE. Holding on to a thing they hate and sabotaged. The Governor is challenged to ponder and enquire from Sam Onwuemeodo’s kinsman who served as both Commissioner and later Director-General of the Governorship Campaigns who it was that initially armed the coalition with the dossiers on the former First Lady because he believed she hated him with a passion. There shall certainly be another day for the details.
Media Adviser to Hon. T.O.E. Ekechi