N460m scandal rocks Imo Assembly

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TRACKING >>Imo State House of Assembly has raised concerns over how N460 million in its account was allegedly expended during the time of the suspended Speaker, Acho Ihim.

Imo State House of Assembly

TrackNews gather yesterday in Owerri that the issue has caused disaffection among the lawmakers as they were still not sure how to go about the investigation.

TrackNews was at the last sitting of the House of Assembly where the controversial issue was extensively deliberated and it was noticed that some disagreed slightly on the report submitted by Deputy Speaker, Chika Madumere-led ad hoc committee.

The Speaker, Chinedu Offor, resolved at the committee of the whole session, after listening to the arguments of his colleagues, to stand down the report in view of revisiting the matter later.

However, while some lawmakers insisted that there is need to probe the former Speaker Ihim, to explain what he could have done with the money in question, others said Ihim’s case would not achieve the needed result.

In the dramatic session, the Deputy Speaker, Madumere, emphasised that “we are not saying that the former Speaker has embezzled any money but he should be bold to come out and account for it. Nobody is saying he has done anything.”

Also, the member representing Ikeduru state constituency, Uche Oguwuike said the entitlements of about five suspended lawmakers had not been paid and for that reason, there is need to investigate the amount of money raised on the floor of the House.

He said: “There is a need to look into this matter. You can recall that five lawmakers were suspended and till now, their entitlements have not been paid. Therefore, the Speaker should come and tell us about the money.”

However, what looks like a softened argument came from the member representing Aboh Mbaise state constituency, Mike Iheanetu, who suggested that “a man’s hair cannot be shaved in his absence,” adding that “it would be appropriate to invite the former Speaker to hear from him.”

For the member representing Obowo state constituency, Kennedy Ibeh, “the committee which submitted the report ought to have included in their report, an analytical breakdown of their findings instead of just mentioning an amount of money.”

According to Ibeh, “such a comprehensive report would have aided extensively in the probing of the matter.

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