Newly-sworn-in Governor of Imo, Emeka Ihedioha, has alleged that his immediate predecessor Rochas Okorocha’s administration “degraded” most institutions in the state.

Ihedioha stated this in his inaugural speech shortly after being sworn-in by Imo Chief Judge, Justice Paschal Nnadi, at the Dan Anyiam Stadium, Owerri on Wednesday.

The governor, who sympathised with the people of the state over what he described as “debased and desecrated governance,” promised to remedy the damages done by the immediate past administration.

He solicited the cooperation of all stakeholders in the rebuilding process, pointing out that appropriate steps would be taken so as to restore faith and confidence in government.

“The outgoing administration degraded and destroyed most of our institutions and values.

“The legislature, the judiciary and the civil service, all suffered grievous assaults, with the House of Assembly made redundant and court orders routinely disregarded.

“But Imo State will, as always, endure. Imo will revive and prosper again.

“We urge you to be courageous in this conviction, for we are not captives of fear.

“We will not waste a day getting to work to renew the Imo promise of our founding fathers. Therefore, we will take appropriate measures to restore faith and confidence in government.

“I stand ready to personally interface and facilitate with any person or company willing to establish business in Imo. Together, we shall achieve the Imo of our dreams.

“Imo shall rise again,” the governor said.

In a reaction, however, Chief Press Secretary to Okorocha, Mr. Sam Onwuemeodo, said he was not surprised, insisting that the ex-governor left shoes too big to fit into.

Onwuemeodo listed Okorocha’s achievements to include free education, security and urban renewal.

“Owerri is fastest growing city in the Federal Republic of Nigeria. In 2011, no one could move out of their houses after 7.00 p.m., but today, Imo is secure and businesses are thriving.

“We raised the bar and the shoes are just quite big,” he said.

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