I never promised returning abandoned property to Igbo – Amaechi

A former Minister of Transportation and leader of the All Progressives Congress in Rivers State, Rotimi Amaechi, has denied the allegation that he promised to return all abandoned property to the people of Igbo ethnic nationality in the state.

Amaechi insisted that his statement during a stakeholder meeting with the Igbo community in Rivers State was twisted and misrepresented by some “unscrupulous and ill-advised elements”.

The PUNCH had earlier reported that Amaechi apologised to the people of Igbo ethnic nationality over the loss of properties in the state after the 1967-1970 civil war adding that whatever they lost, including houses, would be given back to them in due course.

Meanwhile, Amaechi through a statement made available by his media office on Tuesday titled, ‘Amaechi never promised to return abandoned property to Igbo in River State,’ said since the Igbo who left their properties in Lagos and in the North were given back,  the ones in Port Harcourt should not have been an exception.

The former governor accused the administration of Governor Nyesom Wike of circulating propaganda against him.

He stressed that he did not say anything about compensation on abandoned properties to the Igbo in Rivers State during the meeting.

The statement further 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 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.

“We would ordinarily not respond to these kinds of comments deliberately twisted by the rarely sober Governor Wike and his agents of wickedness and mischief who Rivers people and Nigerians know they trade in divisive fake news, to malign the person and character of Amaechi.

“Amaechi did not and has never said anything about compensation on abandoned properties to the Igbo in Rivers State.

“He 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 APC in the upcoming governorship and state assembly elections.

He said, “We need you to come out, we need you to stand, we need you not to be harassed. If they burn any of your houses or they burn any of your shops, write your name and give to …. We will replace everything they burned, everything you lost. The Rivers State Government will not start if we win, without paying you back.”

“This is the true state of things, and we urge Rivers people to ignore and discountenance the misconstrued tirades being peddled by Governor Nyesom Wike and his agents …,” he maintained.

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