By Ignatius Okorocha
Former governor of IMO state and Senator Representing Imo west Senatorial district, Owelle Rochas Okorocha has advocated for what he terms a ‘Systematic Resource Control’ that will enable the people play an active role in adding value to the economy and contribute to the government of the day by way of tax.
Sen. Okorocha disclosed this in Abuja at the weekend when he participated in a Webinar Conference held with Nigerians in South Africa under the umbrella body called Nigerians in South Africa Association, convened by Dr Anthony Kingsman.
He said he was able to record daily success in the economic regeneration of Imo state as governor because he allowed people play active roles in the economy of the state, a fit that remains unparalleled in the history of Imo people.
His words “ I believe in ‘Systematic Resource Control’, I believe that people should be allowed to produce their own goods and contribute quota by giving tax, because the sense of accumulation of wealth is embedded in Africans when it comes to governmental affairs, and it will help check corruption” he said.
“If you are from the Niger Delta, in your community if you are given one cow as a state to share within the LGA, much people will not care about it, if they give you one goat as a an LGA much people will not care about it, but if they give you one chicken as a community, infact if someone takes the head, without the other taking the legs you may have to go in for it”.
“We are stronger at the community level than we are strong at the LGA level, we are stronger at the LGA’s than we are at the state level and we are stronger at the state than we are at the Federal”
“So there is need for devolution of power and allow for a systemic control of resources, but with targets, the thing with our country is that there is no target, there is no tax.
“As governor of Imo state for eight years the success story remains unrivaled in the thirty six years before my tenure, you have to look at the culture of your people and apply it.”
The lawmaker during the Web conference which had the theme ‘Harnessing Diaspora Resources for the Growth of the Nation’ stressed that governors at state executives have immense powers at their disposal to turn around the fortunes of their respective states.
Reacting to a question posed by Prince Michael Evah of the Niger Delta People Congress in South Africa, on Resource Control and the need to implement the report of the 2014 National Conference on the subject matter, Sen Okorocha noted thus “ Talking about resource control, provision of State Police and True Federalism, where there will be a weak centre and we think that this will make Nigeria progress, it is a good example of a bad workman quarreling with his work tools.”
“Our constitution as moribund as it is sufficient for any great leader to turn around the history of this country, on resource control, I don’t know of any power that is not vested on the governor of a state, how we are wired as Africans is that we believe in the primitive accumulation of wealth, high sectionalism and nepotism, it takes a leader to correct that.
“If you come to Ijaw land, the Itshekiri and Ijaw nation will have problems when that comes in, so if you come within a community one village will have problems with the next village, that is why I prefer ‘Devolution of Power’, where there should still be a central government, but with the provision to give people power to do that which will help the economy of our nation” Okorocha said