By Leo Okachie
Umuahia, Jan. 21, 2023
The Labour Party (LP) Governorship Candidate in Abia, Dr Alex Otti, says he will build a turbine in Ikwuano through Public Private Partnership (PPP) to exploit the huge lignite deposit in the area for electricity generation.
Otti said this at Amizi Oloko in Ikwuano Local Government Area, when he paid homage to the Council of Traditional Rulers at the Palace of its Chairman, Eze Eugene Ndimele.
He said: “I commissioned a small study in Ikwuano and the report showed that you have lignite (clean coal) deposit in commercial quantity.
“I will bring in a company that will build a turbine in partnership with the government to mine and heat it to generate electricity for Ikwuano and Umuahia down to Arochukwu.
“With that in place, you will be sure of 24-hour uninterrupted electricity supply,” Otti said.
He expressed joy that the Geometric Power Plant, Aba, had been completed and would soon begin to provide electricity to the Aba industrial hub and Ukwa axis.
He said that the plant was funded by the defunct Diamond Bank Plc through his intervention as the Managing Director.
Otti said that it had become expedient that the local government should be split into two because of its vast land mass.
He promised to deploy the vast arable land in the area for huge agricultural production to ensure food security and a healthy population.
He said that his administration would initiate a deliberate off-taking of agricultural produce from farmers to ensure availability of food and stable pricing all year round.
The governorship hopeful further spoke of his plan to engage the private sector to revive some strategic but moribund industries in the state, especially the textile sub-sector.
He said that government would take the initiative rather than leave it to the private sector, which is often driven by profit motive.
He said that the essence of taking the initiative would be to generate employment for the youths on short and long term basis.
The renowned economist said that the zero Federation Account had made it imperative for Abia to elect ingenious and economically sound technocrats that would think outside the box to generate revenue for development and depend less on montly allocation from the centre.
He blamed the socio-economic under-development of the state on bad leadership.
According to him, it has become traditional for every outgoing inept administration to foist a worse successor on the state and its citizenry.
Otti expressed delight that the people’s votes would count in the upcoming elections due to the landmark technological innovations introduced by INEC.
He, therefore, urged the people to use their PVCs to vote out politicians that had kept the state down on its knees since the return of democratic rule.
Otti also held a special session with the President Generals (PGs) of Oloko, Oboro, Ibere and Ariam-Usaka clans that make up Ikwuano.
He spoke extensively on his 46-page manifesto and his commitment to ensure its full implementation, when elected.
He said that his administration would build one viable industry in each of the 17 Local Government Areas to create wealth among the people.
The meeting was attended by Chief Friday Eluwa, Chief Christian Amaefula, Chief Nnanna Atuonwu and Chief Chuks Amaonwu, amongst others.
Earlier, the PGs had expressed their confidence in the integrity, competence, capacity and sound quality of Otti to take Abia out of the woods.
They promised to vote massively for him but appealed to him to remember Ikwuano in his development agenda, when elected.
They said that although the area was part of the Umuahia Capital Territory, there was nothing to show for it in terms of government’s presence or meaningful political appointments.
Otti also addressed crowds of party faithful and supporters at Ndoro Oboro and Ngwu Ibere, where he spoke about his plan to deploy the security vote to empower women and youths.
He said that empowering the youths would help to create wealth and reduce crime in the state to the barest minimum.
He was accompanied on the campaign tour by his wife, Cecilia, members of the state and National Assembly candidates from Ikwuano constituency and members of his Campaign Council, led by the Director-General, Chief Acho Obioma, amongst others.