Otti Takes Over Govt In Abia, As Ikpeazu Bows Out

.....Abians Drop Expectations




History was being made today as the Labour Party’s (LP), Governorship candidate and winner of the 2023 gubernatorial election in Abia, Dr Alex Chioma Otti, was sworn in as the fifth democratically elected governor of Abia state.

Dr Alex Otti who officially took over the saddle of leadership from Dr Okezie Ikpeazu of the PDP,  bringing to an end the party’s dispensation after 24 years of being in power.

Recall, that Dr Otti clinched the seat of Abia’s Number One Citizen after two failed attempts, precisely in 2015 and 2019 under the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA).

Luck smiled on him in the March 18, 2023 gubernatorial election, under the Labour Party (LP), as his candidacy got monumental support, resulting to his victory.

Dr Alex Otti, alongside his Deputy Emetu

Meanwhile, as Abians are rejoicing over the shift in the political sphere, some notable Abians who spoke with our Political Reporter, dropped their expectations from the new government and as well, rated  the outgone government, under Dr Okezie Ikpeazu..

The Board of Trustees Chairman of Abia G-17, Dr Clifford Agbaeze, said he expects the new Governor to be focused, patient to listen and accommodate constructive criticisms and as well, steer clear of sycophants, who specialize in telling him only those things he would like to hear.

Dr Clifford Agbaeze

According to Dr Agbaeze, he expects Governor Otti to focus on these critical areas: security, road construction particularly, access roads into the state and should be his100 days in office, signature projects, power and payment of verified salary and pension arrears.

“Security should address the problem of youth unemployment and underemployment in the state which are currently way above the National average..

“My advice to the new administration is the same as what I said in my opening statement. Dr Alex Otti is a known technocrat with a solid record of top notch performance in the corporate world and that’s the type of experience this state desperately needs at the moment. His early appointments into His Transition (now Standing Advisory) Council, attests to the fact that he’s headed in the right direction. I have no doubt that he would surpass the expectations of Abians.

“Meanwhile, i would rate Ikpeazu’s government less than abysmal. A monumental waste. A golden opportunity lost for a young man who had an opportunity to write his name in gold but wasted it spectacularly!

“I won’t miss them and I doubt if any well-meaning Abian would! For me, it’s good riddance to bad rubbish,may his type never come again”, he said.

Also, the Abia State chairman of the African Democratic Congress (ADC), Obinna Don Norman, said the new government must depart from the conventional PDP’s administrative style.”In other words, they should end the recirculation of public officeholders, especially the dead woods. I expect the new administration to run a purposeful government. Transparency should be their watchword and i expect them to avoid whataboutism and deliver dividends of democracy to the people”.

Abia ADC Chairman, Obinna Don Norman

Continuing, the ADC chairman urged the new administration not to discard their manifesto, but avoid blame games, excuses and witch-hunting, as Abians elected them to improve their lives.”They should not tamper with the Local Government funds and ensure they publish regularly, the Abia State audited financial report. Adverts for contract bidding must be made open and terms made public”.

Evaluating the performance of the outgone administration, Norman stated that considering the protracted court cases that bedeviled the Ikpeazu’s government, it is fair to say that the government of Ikpeazu wasn’t a failure the way people projected it on social media, regretting that the decision of the Ikpeazu’s government to boycott the media was a bad one, as It allowed negative news stories about the state to thrive for too long. So, before they realized it, the damage was done. “The government had weak media representation and management”.

Overall, the ADC chairman, said Okezie Ikpeazu performed better than his predecessors, saying that his greatest undoing was the salary and pension conundrums, which was not properly managed. “From my investigation, Abia has 28,000 civil servants. Only 1500 of them from the Agencies and Parastatal were owed. Though I believe that a worker deserves his wages, the issue was blown out of proportion”, he explained.

Norman further disclosed that the outgone government was never decisive in its decision-making, as there were a lot of policy somersaults and it also accommodated too many folks who had no business in government.

“My expectation is that the incoming administration should avoid these banana skins, if it wants to outperform its predecessors. The new government should also avoid the politics of the next of kin and resentments and ensure it runs an all-inclusive government.

“The winner takes it all government we run in Abia is one of the reasons we have not actualised our potential”.

A Sociopolitical Analyst, Mazi Emeka Okoro in his opinion, charged the new Governor to focus on issues of governance and avoid nepotism.

Okoro stated that the Ikpeazu’s government was perceived as corrupt due to the life style of his close aides and brothers, stressing that he would rate the past governor high on the area of security and low on other indices of governance.

However, he revealed that the former governor, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu, governed the state as an ngwa man instead of a pan Abia nationalist, urging the new governor not to toe in that direction.

Similarly, another concerned Abian, Chief Tony Kalu, rated the Ikpeazu’s administration fairly, with reasons being that the ex governor lacked the political will power to deliver for Abia when he had the opportunity.

Mr Tony Kalu

Also, he stated that the former governor surrounded himself with two categories of people, the “Yes Yes Men” and those who pretended to have his interests at heart but deceived him at every turn.

“Ikpeazu had the opportunity to be a great leader after OUK and Ochendo, but squandered it due to shortsighted and incoherent vision, stemming from selfish and shallow minded advisers.

“My regret about the past administration was supporting Ikpeazu for a second tenure like so many Abians did, when it was obvious that the man had no hidden plans to deliver for our people. Abians lost additional four years because of optimists like myself”.

Kalu, however, noted that since every government begins from where the last one stopped, he is therefore, sure that the new governor being a professional and highly exposed individual, is fully aware of the mammoth task that awaits him even from right now.

“I, therefore, plead with Abians to be courageous and patient with the new government, we did not find ourselves in this mess overnight and we will not get out of it in a hurry. Soon, Abians will experience the difference”, he said.

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.