Ahead of the governorship election slated for November 11 in Imo State, a letter exclusively obtained by SecretsReporters has revealed what appears to be a ploy by the government of Hope Uzodinma and the All Progressives Congress to stifle other political parties from having access to accommodation during the November governorship election.
In what seems to be a flagrant misappropriation of funds, Governor Uzodinma, through the Ministry of Tourism, made known its intention to occupy all hotel rooms in Owerri, the capital of the state, from Saturday, 4th November to Saturday, 12th November 2023, a day after the election. Checks showed that over 275 hotels are situated in Owerri.
The move is contained in the letter addressed to the Chief Executive Officers and General Managers of all hotels in Owerri.
In the letter, the ministry requests all details of accommodation bills for the said period to be submitted by noon on Thursday, 26th October. The directive specifies that every room, regardless of size or classification, should be made available to the Ministry at the usual room rate for the duration.
The reason for the extensive reservation is believed to be tied to means of rigging the election by luxurious camping of some persons that could be vote influencing tools and deprivation of accommodation to other visitors coming to the state within the election period.
The letter signed by the Commissioner of the Ministry of Tourism, Egemba, reads, “REQUEST FOR RESERVATION OF ALL YOUR HOTEL ROOMS FROM 4TH NOVEMBER-12TH NOVEMBER, 2023
“I wish to refer to the above subject and inform you that the Ministry of Tourism intends to rent and occupy all the rooms in your hotel, no matter the size and classification, from Saturday 4th November to Saturday 12th November 2023 at your usual cost per room for full occupation.
“I therefore request you to submit to my office before 12 noon tomorrow, Thursday 26th October, 2023, details of your accommodation bills for all the rooms covering the period for settlement.
“Your urgent cooperation would be appreciated, please.”