Following allegations levelled against him by the Director General of Voice of Nigeria, Mr. Paris Okechukwu, that he was pitting the Catholic Church against the All Progressives Congress (APC) in IMO State, Governor of that state, Rochas Okorocha has replied the VON DG, insisting that the allegation was false and self-serving.
Okorocha labelled the VON boss as one of those who feel the only way to advance in the party is by attacking his person.
A statement issued by the Chief Press Secretary to Governor Rochas Okorocha, Sam Onwuemeodo, said: “The Director General of VON, Okechukwu had accused Governor Okorocha of pitting the Catholic Church against APC without explaining how he arrived at such claim, except that he made reference to a report that the Archbishop of Owerri Catholic Diocese, Bishop Anthony Obinna won’t produce APGA governor in 2019, and that the governor had taken President Muhammadu Buhari to the archbishop when he came to Owerri for the 2015 election campaign.
“Okechukwu is one of those who have the erroneous feeling that the only way they can grow in APC is by attacking Governor Okorocha. And the man has been doing it religiously without a response from us.”
Onwuemeodo said Okorocha has shown amazing love and unbridled respect to Archbishop Obinna and has no problem of any kind with the Catholic Church. “What Governor Okorocha has done for the Catholic Diocese of Owerri, no past governor, whether civilian or military did it for them. Let anybody say it is not true.
“Don’t forget that President Buhari got only 14,157 votes in Enugu State, where the DG comes from, and got 133,253 in Imo, not minding that Imo was the target of the PDP-led federal government in the 2015 election with thousands of soldiers and other security agencies besieging the state.
“If the governor didn’t mean well, he would not have taken President Buhari to the archbishop. But, two days after that visit, the Leader Newspaper, owned by the archbishop, had a banner headline, “Alhaji in Government House.”
Regardless, Okechukwu, yesterday, said he did not mean to disparage Governor Okorocha in his appeal for him to stop pitting the Catholic Church with the APC and, by extension, President Buhari.
He stated this in press release in reaction to the statement issued by Governor Okorocha through Onwuemeodo.
“I still maintain my appeal to His Excellency, Okorocha, to climb down from his high horse and address the main issue at stake and cultivate harmonious relationship with the great Catholic Church.