It’s not my responsibility to pay judges’ salaries, Okorocha replies Ohakim
• Urges Buhari to reply to Obasanjo’s letter
Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State yesterday replied his predecessor, Ikedi Ohakim, who threatened to protest naked against his actions.
Okorocha, who fielded questions from journalists at the Government House, Owerri, accused the former governor of crying more than the bereaved.
According to him, the payment of judges’ salaries was the responsibility of the Federal Government, while the state only pays them allowances.
He said: ‘‘we don’t owe any judge, as the state has no obligations for such. Ohakim is crying more than the bereaved, even as we don’t have anything against the judges.’’
Ohakim, had last Saturday accused Okorocha of not paying judges for about 16 months.
He threatened to protest naked along Wethdral Road, if the governor refuses to pay the judges by March.
Also yesterday, the governor pledged to support the state Commissioner for Information, Prof. Nnamdi Obiareri for a senatorial seat in 2019.
On his successor, the governor said he was disturbed about the person to succeed him in 2019, noting that such candidate must be a person of impeccable character.
“Anybody who would succeed me should not be a bad person, who would send his protocol to lock up people. He must not be involved in 419 deals, not greedy and not an illicit drug addict or unforgiving person,” he said.
He also announced that he would confer the state’s merit award on 42 distinguished Imo persons to compensate them for their meritorious services to the state.
He said former governors would be part of those to be honoured.
Meanwhile, the governor asked President Muhammadu Buhari to respond to the letter by ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo.
He said: “The letter was a high-level letter which requires a high level response. I am expecting that Buhari at the right time would respond to the letter.
“As said earlier, if Buhari says he would run, then I would not contest the presidential election.”
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