I owe no apology for inviting Zuma, erecting his statue – Okorocha

Gov Rochas of Imo state honours President Zuma with a medallion [Photo: Nigerian Monitor]

Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State has accused the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, of not building the image of the state, as well as looting public treasury.

The accusation comes days after he unveiled a huge statue in hounour of South African President, Jacob Zuma.

The decision has been widely criticised as endorsing the governance style of a president who is facing corruption charges in his country.

More so, the honour was done Mr. Zuma few days after another Nigerian, Jelili Omoyele, a 35-year-old, was killed in South Africa.

A statement by the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Sam Onwuemeodo, on Tuesday said the PDP never attracted any meaningful personality to the state.

“If it was in the days of PDP, Schools and Markets would have been shot down. And roads closed because President Zuma was coming. But none of such things was done because Rochas and his government have human face. The PDP for the 12 years they held sway never attracted any meaningful visitor to the State except PDP NEC members who were coming to loot the State,” the statement read.

Mr. Onwuemeodo in the statement also explained the rationale behind the governor’s gesture, saying Mr. Zuma’s visit was principally to sign a MoU between Jacob Zuma Education Foundation and Rochas Foundation College of Africa.

Furthermore, he said a meeting was also held with Mr. Zuma and other businessmen at the Ikemba Ojukwu centre, including Leo Stan Ekeh of Zinox Computers, Dr. Pascal Dozie of Diamond Bank, Chairman of Innoson Motors, and a host of others.

After the meeting, the state government decided to encourage the South African president to do more and appreciated him for coming by honouring him with a Merit Award and erecting his statue, the statement added.

In a non-apologetic manner, Mr. Onwuemeodo said Gov. Rochas was determined to bring development to Imo state and would not be deterred by criticisms.

“And in case these “Galatians” do not know, if all we need to do to attract good things or investments to Imo is erecting statues, then, we have no option than to erect as many of such structures as possible. We owe no one apology. Rochas made a promise to open the doors of Imo to the rest of the world, for good and he is doing that and we cannot be deterred by these enemies of our people,” he said.

The gesture had earlier created widespread criticisms especially on social media.

Just recently, Governor Rochas reacted to a screenshot of his verified Twitter handle responding to a blogger, Japheth Omojuwa’s tweet.

Gov. Rochas denied insulting the blogger, saying the circulating screenshot was a Photoshop.

Mr. Omojuwa however rebuffed the governor, accusing him of deleting the tweet seconds after the reply.


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  • Watch man

    Rochas owes nobody any apology because he selected and installed himself in the office he occupies now. If the electorate elected him he would not be opening wide his bogus mouth to be insulting the sensibilities of that country, Nigeria. Besides, he seems to be applauding the killing of Nigerians in SA instead of protesting. This shows how empty and animalistic the heads of Nigeria lootocrats who masquerade as leaders could be. So shameful!

  • uche

    it was 1ce rumored that rochas was SLAPPED by a spirit, i didnt believe the story but with the recent happenings in the state house, am beginning to believe that story..
    because rochas has been acting very funny and crazy….well i hope he runs mad…

  • D-A-N-G-O-T-E-C-E-M-E-N-T








  • Bunkaya Gana

    This is ridiculous. So, how many official MOU’s did he sign with the state Government and what investment opportunities do these MOU’s bring to the people of Imo state?. I sympathize with the good people of Imo state for entering ‘one chance’

    • Iskacountryman

      zuma does not understand that he is the president of south africa, and should deal only with nigerias president while he is in office…

  • Bright Henry

    This ridiculous. So to spend 520 million is just OK while workers are being Owed in the name of the flimsy excuses given here. I pity for Imo state.

    • Iskacountryman

      okoroacha for president…

  • Cincinnatus

    You don’t need to apologize. It’s because you are slow. I don’t know who crowned these people as god, kings, leaders or whatever they think they are. I blame the older generation who chose these lot to replace them in leadership. Does this one look like leadership material before you pushed him in. If not that you are the thieves we know you are, we’d have just assumed you older leaders are slow too. What kind of country is this sef.

  • Kelly

    Rochas Ibos are ashamed of you. IMO state is cursed by your presence. You have brought yourself to a stinking sorry state of international ridicule. Every child in the Nigeria and South Africa now disgust fully hears the sound of your name as a sound of mockery and curroption. TUFFIIAAA!!!!!!! AZHI GBAGBUKWE GI OOO.

    • man leader

      I don’t understand the last sentence, but I say amen to it

  • Debaptist

    If only Nigerians were serious about their destiny as a people this your belligerent act would have killed your political ambition forever. This has nothing to do with PDP, it is a national embarrassment and with ‘leaders ‘ like this you see why the likes of Kanu will continue to rise in Igbo land. As far as I am concerned that statue which represents all that is wrong with Africa will surely come down and Okorocha will fall with it then APC will join if they fail to speak out against this silly act.

    • man leader

      I can understand why we have people like Evans all over.

  • tsunami1earthquake

    Okorocha, you miss the point again! And I reckon you have a very bad adviser. Coming here to mouth that you owe no apologies for the serious mess you have committed just goes to show your cluelessness. Very soon you will owe tons and tons of apologies to Nigerians and people of your State, in particular, for this serious mess. But then everybody would know that you are apologizing because you want their votes for one political office or another. And when that time comes, Jacob Zuma would not be around to campaign or plead for you; you would be on your own!

    You have really shot yourself in the foot! You are the type of person who goes to sweep clean someone else’s compound, while your own compound is littered with mess and garbage.

  • Leke

    Yes, Governor Okorocha, you do owe the people apology for doing what they do not expect you to do. They put you in that hot seat and so, you are answerable to them. Remember, you were ELECTED by the people, not appointed!

  • john peters

    you erect zuma statue to do more of what?.don’t worry it’s just a m,matter of 2019,all those shrine you called statues will be demolished

  • Leke

    Unless it was your own money you spent to build and erect the statue, (and in any event, you should have done that in South Africa and not on Nigerian soil), then you can say whatever you like. Barring that, you owe the people a big apology to have spent public money recklessly while in a position of trust.

    • Timothy

      I totally agree with you there

  • Timothy

    Rochas my man, dis one u do no jell ooooo, haba !

  • man leader

    I don’t see any difference between military dictatorship and this useless democracy.



  • How on earth can one crook who is being chased from pilar to post in South Africa bring development to another useless crook who has impoverished his state?