A new twist has emerged on the issue of Abia State Government accounts that were frozen on the order of a High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, last week.
A source conversant with goings on within Abia government’s circle disclosed that the accounts freezing saga is a deliberate ploy by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) government to avoid payments of outstanding salary arrears of civil servants, salaries for the remainder of two months the administration has to stay in office and debts owed contractors for jobs done.
The source who spoke Sunday on the condition of anonymity insisted that the government of Governor Okezie Ikpeazu is complicit in the court case as the government considered the option as the only way it can avert the humongous debts said to be running into billions of Naira.
The Abia State Government had in a statement over the weekend falsely accused the Governor-Elect of the state, Dr. Alex Otti of being mastermind of the court order that froze all the state government’s accounts in different money deposit banks in Nigeria.
In the statement signed by the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Eze Chikamnayo, who is currently facing a N5 billion suit, bordering on defamation of character, brought against him by Dr. Otti, the government poured invective on the incoming Governor, accusing him of trying to settle scores with the state government.
However, the source revealed that the order coming shortly after Governor Ikpeazu boasted on national television that he would pay all debt accumulated by his administration, was a deliberate plan to push the burden of payment to the incoming administration of Dr. Otti and save itself further shame and resentment by Abia people, who had through the ballot box ended the 24 years of PDP hegemony and bad leadership in the state.
“The accounts in question have little or no credit balances in them, compared to the humongous amount of the state’s indebtedness to its workforce and local contractors. If Ikpeazu and his government are serious and insist that they are not behind this litigation, let them publish the balances of the frozen accounts for Abians and Nigerians to see,” the source challenged.
According to the source, what the outgoing PDP government in Abia is trying to do is to set the people of Abia against the widely-accepted incoming Labour Party (LP) government to be led by Dr. Otti, who, “I can assure you does not have any hand in the matter”.
Chikamnayo had on behalf of the state government threatened: “The danger in this macabre dance is that if they continue this way, sooner than later, the atmosphere of peace and security carefully sustained, enjoyed and even taken for granted by some Abians will suddenly evaporate – giving way to a new wave of killings and persecution under the gestapo style of an imperial impetuous leadership.”