I didn’t promise returning abandoned houses to Igbo – Amaechi

A former Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, has denied promising to compensate Igbo in Rivers State who lost their property during the 1967-1970 civil war.

Amaechi had last week during a stakeholders’ meeting in Port Harcourt asked the Igbo businessmen, whose houses or shops were burnt for any reason, to write down their names.

“We will replace everything they burned, everything you lost,” he had said.

But the former minister, in a statement by his media office  on Tuesday, said he was  surprised that his statement was “twisted and misrepresented” by  “unscrupulous and ill-advised elements.”

“For record purposes, we hereby state the fact as it is, that Amaechi did not and have never said anything about compensation on abandoned properties to the Igbos in Rivers State,” the statement read.

“We are astonished that even the respected Rivers State Council of Traditional Rulers fell for the false story and fake news being propagated by the Rivers State Governor without making any effort to clarify what Amaechi actually said.

“Yet they (the monarchs) went ahead to address the media, castigating and condemning the immediate-past Rivers State Governor on the basis of a fake, ill-conceived story obviously concocted by the current failed Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike.

“Amaechi only rehashed his apology to the Igbo when he became governor of Rivers State, that he was sorry on behalf of the state on abandoned properties from the Nigerian civil war.

“Amaechi only mentioned compensation when he spoke about people who are being intimidated, harassed, and threatened with violence due to their choice of voting and support for the All Progressives Congress in the upcoming governorship and state Assembly election.

“This is the true state of things, and we urge Rivers people to ignore and discountenance the misconstrued alcohol-fuelled tirades being peddled by the utterly shameless Governor Nyesom Wike and his agents of falsehood and purveyors of fake news.”

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