The former chairman of the Imo State Council of Traditional Rulers, Eze Cletus Ilomuanya has allegedly attacked Imo State ex-Governor Rochas Okorocha inside Air Peace at the Sam Mbakwe International Cargo Airport, Owerri.
According to The Nation, the incident happened on Sunday in the business class section of Air Peace when both men were heading to Abuja from Owerri, Imo State capital.
It was learnt that the trouble started when the monarch allegedly told the ex-governor, who sat next to him, to get out of his sight.
An argument had ensued between the duo but the situation degenerated into a confrontation as the monarch was said to have hit the former governor with his walking stick and shouted at him to stay away from him and Orlu people.
It took the intervention of the flight captain and the flight attendants to separate both men but they continued hurling insults at each other.
While Okorocha maintained calmness and immediately relocated to another seat, Ilomuanya continously warned him to stay away from Orlu Senatorial District if he truly wanted peace to reign.
Ilomuanya is one of the two monarchs dethroned by Okorocha on June 6, 2014. He was, however, reinstated as the traditional ruler by former Governor Emeka Ihedioha, who said the reinstatement was based on a legal advice.
Reacting to the incident, Okorocha’s media aide, Sam Onwuemeodo, described Ilomuanya’s action as “disgraceful, unfortunate, condemnable, embarrassing, ungodly, indecent and unexpected from someone who had led the state Council of Traditional Rulers.”
Onwuemeodo said it is possible that the monarch did that to take advantage of the cold war between Okorocha and the current administration and to warm his way into the heart of Governor Hope Uzodinma.
“People like Ilomuanya have told themselves that the easiest way or method to adopt to achieve their aims or ambitions will be to insult or attack Okorocha, leveraging on the hostility of the government in the state now, against Okorocha and his family.
“If Senator Okorocha saw his brother, llomuanya and chose to sit close to him, that action should be highly commended and applauded. It showed that Okorocha had behaved not only as a Christian, but also as a statesman. It showed that he had nothing personal against llomuanya.
“Again, if llomuanya could confront Okorocha to the extent of hitting him with his walking stick and Okorocha did not retaliate but hastily relocated to another seat, we will only say that Okorocha has acquitted himself very well as a two term former of Imo State governor and now a sitting senator and a worthy ambassador of the state and the nation. He has shown character worthy of emulation.”
This is coming one month after Okorocha was arrested following an altercation with Governor Uzodinma’s aide while unsealing the Royal Spring Palm Hotels and Apartments seized by the state government.