Governor Wike said that the Rivers State government had discovered one of the state-owned Legacy 600 aircraft, which had been flown to and abandoned in Germany by the Governor Chibuike Amaechi-led administration since 2012.
Governor Wike, who led a group of Rivers leaders to General Atomics Aerotec in Munich, Germany, where the plane had been abandoned for ten years, claimed the state government had spent more than over three million euros to repair and rescue the plane.
Governor Wike revealed during a meeting with Markus Froetschi, General Manager, Business Development, General Atomics Aerotec, that his government had found the Legacy 600 jet acquired by Dr Peter Odili’s administration was in Germany, as part of an effort to retrieve State assets.
“When we came into office in 2015, we never had an idea that our plane was in your facility. It was a matter of asking questions before we got the information that Legacy 600 belonging to our State is in RUAG, before General Atomics. We tried to make contact with you and which you obliged. So, we want to sincerely thank you for not hiding anything from us, because it is the property of the State government.
Wike added that;
“This plane was bought in 2003 by the government of Dr Peter Odili, and by 2007 he had handed over to the next government which was my predecessor’s, now, Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi. While he was in office, by 2012 this plane was brought here. Reasons we do not know.”
Governor Wike stated that there is no evidence that the state-owned aircraft was flown to Germany and then abandoned for undisclosed reasons.
“The issue is, why was there no documentation to let the incoming government to know that we have this facility and we sent it to RUAG for inspection. Again, I do know from experience that inspection of such facility does not take more than six months. So, if it was brought in 2012, expectantly at least, by early 2013, the plane ought to have come back for use,” he said.
Governor Wike claimed he had to travel to Munich, Germany, with a state delegation to prove that the Legacy 600 plane had been found and was on its way back to the state government.
Those on the governor’s entourage included, the Speaker Rivers State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Ikuinyi-Owaji Ibani; Deputy Speaker, Rivers State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Ehie Ogerenye Edison; Rivers State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Prof. Zacchaeus Adangor; member of House of Representatives, Hon. Ken Chikere; Rivers State chairman, Peoples Democratic Party, Ambassador Desmond Akawor; Chairman, Ikwerre LGA, Hon. Samuel Nwanosike among others.
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