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Imo panel alleges Okorocha diverted N6bn ISOPADEC funds

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Former Imo State governor, Rochas Okorocha, has been accused of diverting over N6 billion Imo State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission (ISOPADEC) funds.

A panel set up by the state government to probe ISOPADEC finances made the allegation against Okorocha in a report submitted to Governor Emeka Ihedioha.

The panel chairman, Romanus Ezeogu said: “The panel findings on finance and monetary bay transactions in the commission showed that ex-governor Okorocha had administered the accounts of the commission as a slush fund as over N6,044,774,341.37 could not be accounted for.

“The issue here begs for an explanation on what happened to the original 40 percent monthly derivation fund allocated to ISOPADEC. Governor Okorocha should be held responsible for the missing funds. The law establishing ISOPADEC provides its funding from the 13 percent derivation from the federation account.”

He also said the former governor allegedly took N422 million from the commission’s treasury.

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According to him, Okorocha used the alleged money to buy pre-inauguration vehicles from Rise and Shine Motors.

He further accused the Imo West senator of also diverting N200 million to purchase transformers during the 2019 campaigns.

Ezeogu added: “We discovered that Dr. Pascal Obi, former principal secretary to the ex-governor, who is now a member of the House of Representatives received N35million from the commission’s funds and we recommend that he be summoned to explain what he did with the money.

“We also recommend that the commission be restructured to ensure sustainable development in oil producing areas of Imo State.”

In his response, Ihedioha said: “Going forward, it is important we get through what happened in the past if we must reposition the commission for a more efficient delivery towards realising its mandate.”

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