Alex Chioma Otti, the new governor of Abia State, and his deputy, Ikechuckwu Emetu, both members of the Labour Party, LP, have been sworn in by Justice Lillian Abai, the state’s chief judge.
Otti, who won the March 18 governorship election over Okey Ahaiwe of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, was sworn in in front of a jubilant crowd of supporters who filled the Umuahia municipal stadium to capacity.
Otti became the next governor under strict security measures.
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The former CEO of the now-defunct Diamond Bank promised to lead from his re-election campaign platform, which would transform Abia State, in his first address to the people of Abia. He added that his team of appointees would be made up of men and women of integrity who are also committed to service.
He hailed the fortitude displayed by INEC officials, who he claimed helped the people’s will win out, and he praised the Labour Party’s presidential candidate, Mr. Peter Obi, as well as Labour Party members for their support of his triumph.
He bemoaned the poor conditions of workers and pensioners in the state brought on by the former administration’s failure to pay their salaries, pensions, and gratuities but gave the workers the assurance that the new administration, led by him, would take prompt, methodical action to improve their situation.
The days of completing subpar work are ended, according to the incoming governor, who pledged to use the services of experienced contractors and seasoned technocrats in the implementation of projects.
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He highlighted that unlike in the past, Abia State’s abundant resources would be used to transform the State, and he pledged to include every area of the State in his development plans even as he gave education, agriculture, health, and security adequate priority.
He pledged to avoid letting his personal affairs interfere with his professional obligations and to be gracious in his dealings with opposing party members even as he sought their support.
Otti, who characterized the current state of Abia as being in a quagmire, attributed the predicament to profound corruption and poor management of the state’s resources.
Otti pledged to address Aba’s infrastructure problems from all angles, stating that a big construction firm will be chosen to handle the repair of the city’s terrible-condition roads in both Aba and Umuahia.
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Otti further cautioned that the days of stealing or diverting public cash into personal accounts were long gone because all funds released for projects will be used for the intended purpose.
The newly elected governor warned those who misappropriated state funds that his government will pursue them using the law.
” Abians have been freed from their bondage and today is the day Abians have been waiting for”
“Let us not live under the illusion that the worst is over. We have only won a preliminary battle But we are certainly going to our promised land because we have resolved that we will no longer serve Pharaoh” Otti said while lamenting, “We have a treasure that has been ravaged.”
Otti declared that 5,000 new teachers would be hired into the State school system while also promising to pay the May 2023 salary and benefits of Abia State employees and erase the distinction between core and non-core civil personnel.
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However, Otti stated that his administration would examine the most recent hires and appointments made by Okezie Ikpeazu’s immediately preceding administration.
Umuahia was ablaze with joy as LP supporters, government employees, business owners, and transporters danced around the streets, just like the day he was declared the winner.
The Labour Party’s vice presidential candidate, Ahmed Datti, the party’s national chairman, Julius Abure, the former minister of transportation, Chibuike Amaechi, senator Theodore Orji, the former governor of the state of Abia, and the former emir of Kano, Lamido Sanusi, among other dignitaries, were present for the swearing-in.
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