Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha may have sacked his Commissioner for Information, Tourism and Public Utilities, Dr. Vitalis Orikaeze Ajumbe over a clash between the duo over council polls.
Investigation by Newsmen showed Ajumbe’s sack, barely three months after he was redeployed from the Ministry of Internal Resources and Pensions Affairs may not be unconnected with an announcement that local government election in the state has been fixed for January 2017.
The leak of that information, sources said angered the governor as the state Exco was yet to fix a date for the council polls.
According to a source in Imo Government House, the governor had only made a suggestion during its weekly executive council meeting and at no time did he postpone the council polls .
“The announcement by the former Information Commissioner, that the state government has fixed a date for local government election was the cause of his immediate sack because the governor was very angry and had even berated him for that.
“The anger of the governor was not the announcement but the fact was that no decision has been taken by him or the state executive council as to when the council election would be held and wondered where Ajumbe had gotten his own information from.
Continuing, another source said that “that unguarded announcement is now like a bone in the throat of the governor and if that election does not hold next year, Imo people would start criticising Okorocha for deceiving them .”
The source also disclosed how Okorocha was not happy with what he called “the shallow reply by Ajumbe to the open letter written to him by his predecessor, Chief Ikedi Ohakim wherein he did not adequately address issues raised in that letter.
Okorocha was also not happy with the former commissioner over his reply to Ohakim’s criticism of the administration and particularly, expansion of roads in the capital. He was berated by the governor and even by other members of the executive council who said he ought to have consulted the governor’s media team before replying to Ohakim’s letter as issues raised in that letter were not addressed.”
When contacted, Ajumbe dismissed reasons for his sack as “the imagination of some people” and insisted that his removal had nothing to do with how he discharged his duties .
Ajumbe, who thanked the governor for giving him the opportunity to serve the state, insisted that it was the prerogative of the governor to hire and fire, adding that he is part of the government whether as commissioner or not.