Imo State, Nigeria – A Committee established by the Imo State Government to investigate the recovery of land belonging to Alvan Ikoku Federal College of Education (AIFCE) has issued a scathing indictment against former Governor Rochas Okorocha. The report, submitted to Governor Hope Uzodimma on Tuesday, reveals that Okorocha employed brute force tactics to seize land from the college.
The Committee, led by Chairman Prof Vitalis Orikeze Ajumbe and Secretary Barr B F Anyanwu, pointedly recommended the retrieval of the Shell Camp land from Okorocha and his associates within a six-month timeframe, with subsequent transfer to AIFCE.
The report lamented that during his tenure as governor, Okorocha utilized aggressive measures, including military intervention and the use of hoodlums, to forcibly acquire land from the college. These seized properties were subsequently allocated or sold to his close allies.
Among the beneficiaries of this controversial land redistribution were two of Okorocha’s in-laws, Dr. Uzoma Anwuka and Hon Kingsley Uju, as well as former Speaker Chief Acho Ihim, Chief Charles Orie, Prince Charles Amadi, and Chief Ugochukwu Hillary.
The Committee’s findings revealed that Okorocha ordered the demolition of 101 buildings owned by AIFCE staff, subsequently confiscating their possessions.
In response, the Committee urged the Imo State Executive Council to take immediate action to recover all land unlawfully appropriated by individuals and institutions. They further recommended that AIFCE assume full control over the reclaimed land and property, once retrieved, and called for the payment of agreed compensation to the land’s original owners, the Orji indigenes.
The Committee also highlighted that the Nigerian Army should vacate the shanties erected on the land and relocate to Obinze.
Governor Uzodimma expressed gratitude to the Committee for its meticulous work and vowed to follow due process in executing the recommendations. The State Government pledged to take the necessary steps to implement the Committee’s findings, ensuring justice and rectifying the improper land acquisition.