13th September, 2023 has taken a prominent, permanent place in the history of Imo State, particularly the State House of Assembly, as a unique day of uncommon event. The day the State House of Assembly under the able leadership of Rt. Hon. Barr Kennedy Chidozie Ibeh, stood still to receive a super parliamentarian, His Excellency, Gov Hope Uzodimma, who arrived in gait, class and style with President Mohammadu Buhari, to commission what could now pass as the best House of Assembly Complex in West Africa, if not the entire African continent.
With the giant stride by Governor Hope Uzodimma to rebuild the ultra modern House of Assembly Complex, he has written his name in gold and stamped his signature firmly, as one parliamentarian who passed through Imo State as its executive governor.
The event on the other hand, also confirmed that Rt. Hon. Barr Kennedy Chidozie Ibeh, the Speaker, in whose tenure the rebuilt State -of -the- Art computerized House of Assembly Complex was commissioned, is a superlative manager of human and material resources. A man of taste and style.
Just like it takes a deep to discover a deep, both the ebullient governor and Mr Speaker are men of upward progression with eyes for perfection and natural development, hence the duo always make separate and collective effort to bequeath Imo the best In all ramification.
It was therefore not surprising that Rt Hon Barr Kennedy Ibeh, upon assumption of office as the Speaker, made strong presentation to Mr Governor on the need for a total overhaul of the dilapidated death trap Assembly Complex which was hanging on the heads of the honourable members and staff like the classical sword of Damocles.
He also presented to the governor the urgent necessity to rebuild the Speaker’s lodge
These requests were not only met but surpassed by the governor. Words alone therefore, could not have been enough by Mr Speaker, the entire members of IMHA to appreciate the governor for frugally expending the appropriation by the House on laudable and commendable projects for which the President of Nigeria was in Imo to commission. Never has Imo seen anything like this before. The stretched Owerri-Orlu road adorned with high powered solar lights. The Owerri-Okigwe road of equal standard and rebuilt State- of the -Art Assembly Complex. This is very phenomenal.
Let me use this moment to tersely respond to some puerile comments of the opposition on the commissioned Imo House of Assembly Complex. One such ignorable statements was the assertion that the Assembly Complex was built and commissioned by our revered former governor Sam Mbakwe, but was merely repainted by Governor Hope Uzodimma.
Another unsubstantiable version of their claims queried why a whooping sum of N940m was expended on commissioning the projects. All these hogwash assertions was just to discredit the Government of Imo State of which IMHA is an arm.
Let it be known that the IMHA complex which was first commissioned in 1991 by Gen. Ibrahim Babangida, has been a complete sham since the 7th Assembly and has remained a threat only waiting to cave in.
No wonder the 8th and the present 9th Assembly ran to a makeshift structure to safe the lives of staff and members.
Governor after governor, such as Gov Rochas Okorocha who saw the obvious danger, rather than tackle the imminent collapse , did haphazard painting, removed the original solid roof and replaced with a low profile sheets. Former Governor Emeka Ihedioha came onboard, inspected the complex and nothing happened afterwards.
Thanks to His Excellency, Gov Hope Uzodimma, who has shown serious commitment in
uplifting the people from infrastructural decay. He quickly swooped Into action upon discussing with Mr Speaker. He did not only rescue the structure by embarking on total structural rebuild from the foundation, but has bequeathed to Imo people a complex of world best standard, laced with ultra modern gadgets, computerized with elevator at the flanks while also rebuilding even other structure within the complex.
How this translate to a mere repainting is left to the opposition to prove. I would rather not respond to the issue of spending N940m to commission the project, because it is an unfounded past time gossip of the opposition. The truth is that it is worthless trying to run down incontrovertible facts. A drive from Owerri-Orlu or Owerri-Okigwe will convince a doubting Thomas about the sincerity of Governor Hope Uzodimma’s administration to tackle the challenge of poor road network and other infrastructure deficit head on.
Pundit have rightly stated that this is probably the first time in many years in Imo State that the executive and the legislature which are constitutionally separated and independently operated are united on a common ground of unity of purposes in the overall interest of the people.
We must appreciate the wisdom and experience of an astute parliamentarian turned governor, Sen Hope Uzodimma, the cerebral and insightful Speaker of Imo State House of Assembly, Rt Hon Barr Kennedy Chidozie Ibeh, Nke-nke Enyi Nachota Igwe Enyi.
Imo must move forward!
Chief Press Secretary to the Speaker,