Fear of imminent arrest has propelled some former Rivers State Local Council Chairmen loyal to the All Progressive Congress, (APC) to threaten to reveal how they spent the N4 billion agricultural loan released by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
According to a political organisation, Support NEW 2015, the recent stance of the Rivers State judicial commission of inquiry on the alleged embezzlement of the funds may have set the council chairmen and the former Commissioner for Agriculture; Emma Chinda against their boss; Mr. Rotimi Amaechi.
The former chairmen who claimed that they were merely used as conduits to siphon these funds, said they were stunned at the figures, dished out by the Permanent Secretary of the Rivers State Ministry of Agriculture.
The Asari Toru Cooperative Society said it only received N13.5 million Naira grant as against the N54.8 million Naira which the Ministry of Agriculture claimed it received .
In a similar vein, the chairman of the Port-Harcourt Cooperative Society, Nnamdi Uche said: “Though I was asked to sign for N134.6 million Naira, what actually got to me was N34.3 million Naira grant, and when I asked for the balance, the commissioner for Agriculture said that was what the governor (Mr. Rotimi Amaechi) approved for me.”
Furthermore, the chairman of Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni local government cooperative, Hon. Augustine Ahiamadu, vehemently stated that he would not allow himself to be punished for a crime he did not commit.
He said “I will not perish for a crime committed by another person. If I’m invited by the commission, I will save my head. You can’t believe I got a paltry sum of N5 million Naira out of the N64.3 million Naira I was asked to sign. This is wickedness.”
It was gathered that other APC former local government chairmen are threatening to testify and expose Amaechi, before the Judicial commission of inquiry to avoid arrest and possible prosecution.
Meanwhile, the former Commissioner for Agriculture, Emma Chinda and the LG chairmen failed to honour the invitation by the judicial commission of inquiry probing into the alleged embezzlement.
Their action propelled the panel to issue a warning for their arrest if they fail to appear before them on Friday, August 28, 2015.