The Imo State House of Assembly has finally broken the silence on the statue erected for the South African President, Jacob Zuma, by the State governor, Chief Rochas Okorocha.
The statue, which bagged wide condemnation from different quarters since it was unveiled a few days ago has been said to have the back up of the state house of assembly.
According to the Speaker of the Imo State House of Assembly and President of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA), Right Honourable Acho Ihim, a bill supporting the statue was passed by legislative before being erected by the governor.
Honourable Acho Ihim, who is also the President of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA), dismissed insinuations making the rounds that the State’s legislative body is a mere rubber stamp for Governor Rochas Okorocha’s decisions to erect the statue.
Speaking with newsmen in his official residence in Owerri on the programmes lined up for the forthcoming Commonwealth Parliamentary Association, tagged: “African region Conference” scheduled to hold in Owerri with President Muhammadu Buhari in attendance, Ihim, argued that it was grossly misleading for some individuals to misconstrue the cordial working relationship between the legislature and the executive in the states as a sign of weakness on the former.
According to him, the prevailing atmosphere of mutual tolerance and understanding between the two arms of government was a product of the impressive performance of the executive which he said had taken the bull by the horn to move the state forward, insisting that the legislature was not prepared to antagonize the executive just to score cheap popularity.
Ihim, who represents Okigwe State Constituency, defended governor Okorocha over the controversial statue of the South African President, Jacobs Zuma in Owerri, saying that it was a product of a bill passed into law by the State Assembly which empowered the governor to accord recognition to any individual who has distinguished himself in his service to God and humanity across the globe.
“The only way to appreciate anybody who does well is to appreciate him when alive or dead,” he said, adding that he wondered why nobody raised an eyebrow when a similar honour was accorded the Ghanaian President Addo Akufo and Second Republic Vice President, Dr Alex Ekwueme.
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