Imo State Government has debunked claims that it intends to reserve all hotel rooms in the state for the forthcoming off-cycle governorship election.
This clarification was contained in a statement issued by Oguwike Nwachuku, the Chief Press Secretary/Media Adviser to Governor Hope Uzodinma.
The statement dismissd allegations that the government is preparing to spend N5 billion to block and book all available hotel rooms in an attempt to control the entry of potential troublemakers into the state.
According to the release, Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Declan Emelumba, explicitly denied such claims while addressing journalists in Owerri.
He said, “The government is not aware of any such hotel bookings. The government does not correspond with stakeholders through social media and will not do so.”
Recently, a circular circulated on social media, purportedly from the state government’s Ministry of Tourism, had instructed all hotels in Owerri metropolis to reserve their rooms for the government’s use.
The circular dated October 25, 2023, and titled “Request for reservation of all your hotel rooms from 4th November to 12th November, 2023,” outlined the intention to occupy all hotel rooms during that period.
The circular also requested hoteliers to submit accommodation bills for all rooms within a specified period.
Emelumba also stated that the opposition plans to flood the state with troublemakers before the elections. However, he assured that this matter was being addressed by relevant security agencies.
Regarding the allegations that the government was importing troublemakers from neighboring states to manipulate the election, Emelumba expressed strong disapproval and deemed it “idiotic.”
He emphasized the government’s confidence in winning the election fairly and called on the people of Imo State to disregard the opposition’s tactics and support Governor Hope Uzodinma’s reelection for a well-deserved second term.