· Threatens to shut down state, if…
By Martin Nwoko
The Inter-Party Advisory Committee (IPAC) has called on the Imo State Government led by Senator Hope Uzodinma to call the Imo State Signage and Advertisement Agency (IMSAA) to order over its move to clamp down on opposition political parties in the state as regards outdoor advertisement as IMSAA has been accused of removing signposts that belong to opposition parties in the state.
Addressing newsmen in Owerri, the state Chairman of Inter-Party Advisory Committee (IPAC), Ichie Levy Ekeh, accused IMSAA of going round the state removing signposts and billboards belonging to opposition political parties on the grounds of not being registered with them.
Ichie Levy said that such action will not in any way be tolerated by the leadership of IPAC in the state stressing that it is undemocratic for political parties duly registered, recognized and supervised by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to get clearance from IMSAA before it mounts signposts in their respective party offices across the state.
According to him, “the actions of IMSAA are undemocratic. In the history of Imo State we have not had it this way, infact they went as far as asking political parties to come and make payments for signposts, billboards and posters. There are places where they have pulled down signposts in front of political parties offices in the state and IPAC is saying we can not take it any longer”.
“IMSAA, by its action wants to put government against IPAC and IPAC against the government. They want to bring us to collusion, we are therefore asking IMSAA and their agents to stop this action forthwith, else they will compel IPAC to take measures that may not be favorable to the state government considering the precarious situation the state is in now. “
The state Chairman of IPAC maintained that any attempt by any government agency to stifle opposition parties in the state will be resisted by the remaining seventeen registered political parties which the All Progressives Congress APC is part of.
Speaking further, Ichie Levy Ekeh who is the state Chairman of Zenith Labour Party reiterated that before now political parties were given liberty to operate by putting their signposts, billboards and posters because this is political season when owners of billboard stands have already paid the state government for such purposes.
According to the letters sent to political parties, requested that political parties in Imo State to write IMSAA seeking their approval before they would be to be able to put up billboards, campaign posters and signposts of political parties and their activities in the State.