A government house source has likened the recent discovery of eight pension fraudsters in Imo State as recently published by Governor Hope Uzodinma to the same playing to the gallery exhibited by Owelle Rochas Okorocha, when only some years ago, he paraded some purported pension fraudsters while in office. This is essentially because, some of the aforementioned pension fraudsters have since denied any links or involvement in the scams.
The Governor has not been able to substantiate his claim which has further discredited any explanation adduced by his government as responsible for the untold delay in payment of pensioners. Many are also asking what business the pension scam has with the payment of workers salaries including those of ISOPADEC, IMSU, ImoPoly and local government staffers.
He revealed also that among those arrested by Rochas Okorocha as pension fraudsters were those he had a secret deal by surreptitiously assuring them that he was going to reward them, if they play along while those in the civil service were to be promoted even to positions of incompetence for compromising.
It would be interesting to note that Okorocha later complied with the promises and assurances he entered into with the purported pension fraudsters. Prominent among the pension scammers identified and paraded by Rochas Okorocha was his age long ally,Mrs Chinyere Uwandu, who was later promoted to the enviable positions of SA and Commissioner within the last lap of his administration, to the chagrin and consternation of keen observers. The said Chinyere Uwandu is today very close to Rochas Okorocha.
Earlier, the said Chinyere Uwandu from Ogwa in Mbaitoli LGA, was appointed as Chairman of the State Local Government Service Commission, with barely little experience. At this time of her appointment, all local government pensioners were under her.
Similarly, one Hippo Ndukwu, who was another person that was indicted in the pension scam, was later promoted as Head of Personnel Management, when it was expected that as promised while making public the alleged scam, Okorocha would have turned him over to the police for prosecution and possible imprisonment as a fraudster.
The third culprit as pronounced by Rochas Okorocha was Mr Ogueri. He was also promoted to the office of Internal Auditor, Government House Owerri, the government house source says. It is therefore very difficult to take Governor Hope Uzodinmas serious on his latest trumped up claims or revelations that eight personnel were involved in the latest pension scam especially now that some of them have publicly denied the allegations thus corroborating the statement made by Chief Alilieli.