-Says:Concord Hotel Gone Under Present Administration

Dr Sam Amadi, an erudite lawyer, former Chairman, National Electricity Regulatory Commission and vocal commentator on contemporary issues, has berated the Governor of Imo State, Senator Hope Uzodinma for what he described as his visionless and non descript approach to governance which has culminated in the dilapidated state of facilities that have the capacity to turn around the fortunes of the state if properly managed.

He also blamed the Governor for not correcting or offering better alternatives to the mistakes and failures of his predecessors as expected.

Dr Amadi, who took extensive look at the performance of the state under successive administrations, scored former Governor Rochas Okorocha high “on his ability to conceptualize and initiate grand projects but lacked the capacity to ensure quality service delivery. Hence he starts very well but finishes poorly”.

On former Governor Emeka Ihedioha, Dr Sam Amadi said, “Emeka Iheidoha started very well but his administration was short lived, hence we don’t know if he would have ultimately succeeded”.

Dr Amadi, who is also a university lecturer stated this in a release which je signed and made available to the press.

The release captioned, “Owerri: A Preliminary Report”, reads thus, “I have been in owerri and going through the city for the past 5 days. Owerri does not look like a well- managed place. The people are doing well for themselves. But the quality of governance is poor and almost non-existent. 

If you go to the Iconic Concorde Hotel you will weep. Two days ago I drove into the compound. There were no souls there. It is completely dilapidated and abandoned. How can? A hotel with such quality design and environment in a state that is famous for entertainment and pleasure? Why should Concorde Hotel not be a prime tourist center even in these days of economic distress? The collapse started long ago. But there should have been a re-creation. Emeka Ihedioha started the re-creation but he was short lived. When Hope Uzodinma became Governor he expectedly sacked Emeka Ihedioha’s board and appointed his own. It is obvious that his board had woefully failed. We do not know whether Emeka Ihedioha would have succeeded because his government was aborted. 

I also took interest in seeing what had become of the International conference center (ICC). It is good thing that Governor Uzodinma has demolished that eyesore. Typically, Okorocha gets some good ideas but lacks the capacity to executive them. That is what happened in the case of ICC. An international conference center is a good facility to make Owerri attractive for conferences and assorted social events. But you do not need to build a ramshackle in the name of a conference center. 

But you would expect Hope Uzodinma to have a better vision. The replacement facility is so shameful. It is still under construction but looks too small and nondescript for our status as entertainment center of Nigeria. It is something a private citizen, in spite of not been a money bag, can easily build. The state should have envisioned a world class conference center with the land available to it. What is being built will not be competitive nationally. It will be dwarfed by what exists elsewhere that there would be little incentive for people to leave Lagos and Abuja and choose Owerri for important conferences. Imo government has opportunity in the 21st Century to build a conference center worth that name. What is being built is a testimony to poor vision and low ambition replacing a grandiose vision with choatic execution. 

This raises concern about the quality of leadership in Imo for more than two decades I have to say that Rochas Okorocha had a better and broad vision than the rest of the governors especially the present Governor. I hate to say this. But, it is true that he had a more grand (some will say grandiose) vision than the present government. Rochas failed because he lacked the stability and calmness to execute according to vision. He built substandard projects and could not build to excellence. If he restrained himself from too much grandiloquence and comics and got a team that can execute and listened to them he would have been a huge success. Now he is a huge failure as Governor of Imo State. But he had a bigger vision and opened owerri up in a way that a good executor will make Owerri beautiful again.

The present government is not correcting Rochas’s failure with anything memorable or grand or excellent. 

But Imo is still a blessed state and Oweri is a beautiful city, mostly because of the creative and happy hearts and minds of the Owerri people.

As Governor Hope Uzodinma commences his second term he has the capacity to change his game and leave a legacy of praise. Or doesn’t he”?