Nigeria: Okorocha's Son-in-Law to Be Flown Abroad for Treatment After Attack

There was a fracas recently in Owerri over the state government sealing of a hotel belonging to Okorocha's wife.

Uzor Anwuka, a medical doctor, who was allegedly shot during a fracas between the former governor of Imo State, Rochas Okorocha, and some youth loyal to Governor Hope Uzodinma, is to be flown abroad for medical treatment, according to The Nation newspaper.

Mr Anwuka, an American trained physician, is Mr Okorocha's son-in-law.

The Nation reported that surgeries done in a Nigerian hospital on Mr Anwuka's left leg where he was shot have failed thrice.

Mr Okorocha, who is currently a senator, was involved in a fracas with the angry youths, led by Governor Uzodinma's aide who accused Mr Okorocha of forcefully unsealing a hotel that was sealed by the Imo State Government.

The senator was arrested and briefly detained at the police headquarters, Owerri.

The hotel, Royal Spring Palm Hotel, Owerri, belongs to the senator's wife.

The government claimed the hotel was built in violation of the city masterplan.

Mr Okorocha's personal aide, Ebere Nzewuji, told PREMIUM TIMES it was untrue that the senator broke the lock and forcefully entered the sealed property.

He said the senator and his entourage only went there "to ask questions", before they were attacked.

How I was shot - Okorocha's son-in-law

Senator Okorocha's son-in-law, Mr Anwuka, on Sunday narrated how he was shot during the Owerri fracas.

"On the day of the incident, my father-in-law (Okorocha) called me that he was in Owerri to see his seized property and I drove down there to see him.

"On getting there, I saw a crowd of thugs. They had guns, cutlasses and other dangerous weapons, they started harassing everyone including my father-in-law.

"It was when they were asked to round us up that they started shooting. I made to climb the fence but I was hit by a bullet and I fell into the bush and I was there for several hours before I was rescued and brought to the hospital," Mr Anwuka said from his hospital bed when Senator Okorocha visited him, according to The Nation report.

"I have been in this hospital for six days and my leg has been operated on three times but it is not getting better. So I will be going out to get a better treatment," he added.

Mr Okorocha said the attack was an attempt on Mr Anwuka's life.

"What I am concerned now is about is life. I thank God he is alive, but the report I am getting from the hospital is not quite pleasing regarding the three surgeries so far conducted since his arrival. We are hoping he should be flown out of the country immediately for further examination," he said.

Governor Hope Uzodinma, meanwhile, has explained why his administration is seizing Senator Okorocha's property.

He said the state government's action was in accordance with a report of a judicial panel set up by former Governor Emeka Ihedioha before he left office.

"You will recall that before I became the governor, the Ihedioha administration set up a judicial panel of inquiry to look into acquisitions of lands and conversion of government lands to personal property. The judicial panel of inquiry chaired by a judge met and they concluded their job. And a white paper has since been raised," Mr Uzodinma told reporters last week in Abuja after meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari.

The governor said the senator went with thugs to unseal the wife's hotel.

"He went there with thugs himself physically, wounded the policemen there, and wounded the civil defense people, the civil defense officer is currently in the hospital.

"He then broke in and entered. Of course, you must have heard him say he is richer than the government and that he is above the law.

"I am not directly involved. It is a position taken by the government. There is a difference between governor and government," Mr Uzodinma said.

Since he left office as governor in 2019, Mr Okorocha has been having a political battle with his successor, Governor Uzodinma. Both men are members of Nigeria's ruling party, APC.

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