The governorship candidate of Labour Party in Abia state, Dr Alex Otti, has vowed to resuscitate all the moribund industries that hitherto contributed immensely towards the growth of the state’s economy in the past.
Otti made this promise last weekend during campaign flag-off at Ngwa for the 2023 election held at Ngwa High School, Aba.
He noted that all the industries textile mills, Glass Industry, Paper Mill, Ogwe Golden chickens at Aba and Ceramics Industry at Umuahia were moribund due mal-administration of PDP over 23 years the party held on to power.
He pointed out that after the declaration of intent to govern Abia, they should disperse to their various corners with the message of freedom, hope and renewal.
The ex-banker turned politician, said, “Abians, we have travelled this path before. Eight years ago, we decided that enough was enough and collectively came together to defeat the evil cabal that had dragged Abia into the path of darkness, misery, poverty, unemployment, and economic retrogression.
The LP guber candidate in the state maintained that they stepped into the ring and roundly defeated PDP adding that the victory was so loud and resounding that it reverberated in the state legislative chambers.
According to him, his party then had won almost half of the available seats. But just like Ray Andersen said, “The powers that keep people in bondage did not relinquish control very easily”.
To this end, he further noted that the same axis of evil, knowing how defective the Electoral Law then in operation was, exploited it and shamelessly stole the mandate of Abia people.
“They had compromised many gatekeepers of electoral sanctity and bullied the state’s returning officer into declaring a false result.
“To their surprise, rather than deter us, their daylight robbery became the gas that powered the engine of our struggle. We pursued the electoral heist at the judiciary, where we won at the Court of Appeal but the Supreme Court relied solely on technicalities and reversed the judgment and awarded the PDP an undeserved victory. The rest is now history.
“Of the close to 5 million people in our dear state, about 31% live in poverty, not knowing where their next meal will come from. But that is not all. About 51% of our labour force is unemployed. It means nearly 1 million adults able and willing to work cannot find any job in Abia.”
Otti revealed that not paying workers’ salaries has since become routine in Abia, adding that some workers were owed as much as 30 months arrears of salaries.
“Our state’s only polytechnic lost accreditation owing to over 30 months of unpaid lecturers’ salaries.
“As if that is not enough, less than six months ago, our only teaching hospital, Abia State University Teaching Hospital, also lost accreditation. Pensions are not paid, same with gratuities. Just last week, pensioners protested in Umuahia, the state capital, some too feeble to move.
“If we were dissatisfied in 2015, we should be outraged today. And, collectively, we must rise and declare, for our future and that of our children: enough is enough,” he said.