• Thursday, November 30, 2023
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Imo govt denies plan to book all hotel rooms in Owerri for election

Imo govt moves to revive Ahiajoku Convention Centre

…Says, circular is creation of opposition

Imo State Government has said that it had no plan to book all hotel rooms in the state for the forth coming off-season governorship election in the state. A statement sent to BusinessDay by Oguwike Nwachuku, chief press secretary/media adviser to Governor Hope Uzodinma, disclosed.

The release described as outright falsehood, the allegation that the government was planning to spend N5billion to book and block all hotels in the state in order to checkmate the influx of thugs into the state.

The statement said that Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Declan Emelumba had told newsmen in Owerri that the government was not aware of any such arrangement.

Emelumba was said to have clarified that the government has never corresponded with stakeholders through the social media: “The government is not aware of any such hotel bookings. The government does not correspond with stakeholders through social media and will not do so.”

But he acknowledged that the government was aware of plans by the opposition to flood the state with thugs ahead of the elections, adding that the matter was being addressed with relevant security agencies for necessary action.

He described as “idiotic” the allegation that the government was importing thugs from neighbouring states to rig the election.

Emelumba said that contrary to such insinuations, Governor Hope Uzodinma and the APC would win the election in a free and fair contest.

Read also: Police to deploy drones in Bayelsa, Kogi, Imo elections

“The opposition knows that they have already lost the election. That is why they are fabricating all manner of lies to distract the government, like this hotels propaganda,” he said.

He therefore, called on the Imo electorate to ignore all the antics of the opposition and focus on returning the governor for a well-deserved second term to continue his good works.

Recall that a circular had a few days ago gone viral on social media platforms, wherein the state government, through the Ministry of Tourism, had purportedly directed all hotels in Owerri metropolis to reserve all the rooms for it.

Titled, ‘Request for reservation of all your hotel rooms from 4th November to 12th November, 2023’, the circular purportedly signed by Barrister Jerry Egbule Egemba, commissioner for Tourism, had stated: “I wish to refer to the above subject and inform you that the Ministry of Tourism intends to rent and occupy all the rooms in your hotel no matter the size and classification from Saturday 4th November to Saturday 12th November 2023 at your usual cost per room for full occupation.

“I therefore, request you to submit to my office before 12 noon tomorrow, Thursday 26th October, 2023 details of your accommodation bills for all the rooms covering the period for settlement.

“Your urgent cooperation would be appreciated, please.”

The circular addressed to all chief executive officers of hotels in Owerri metropolis, and general managers of hotels in Owerri metropolis, was dated October 25, 2023.