Senator Dave Umahi, Minister of Works, has lauded Governor Alex Otti of Abia State for his remarkable achievements since taking office, stating that the apparent advancements in the state during the last 100 days are evidence that the Governor would deliver.
Umahi, who was in Abia to monitor federal road projects, said he was impressed with Gov. Otti’s performance thus far, and expressed hope that Abia will see significant improvement in the months ahead.
Even though he was not a supporter of the 100-day celebration, the former Ebonyi State Governor stated that Abians and the South East were fortunate to have Governor Otti.
“The Governor’s work is already visible,” Umahi remarked.
“I’d like to congratulate you for the significant improvements you’ve made in the state in just a few months.
“I don’t believe in 100 days or two years in office; I believe in working for the people and allowing the people to see what you’re doing.”
“There is nothing meaningful that anyone who is willing to work can accomplish in 100 days.” You might not even be able to create a significant project in 100 days. But we’ve seen what you’ve been doing because you’ve been around and understand your people’s suffering.
“And so I commend you and also congratulate Abia people because they are going to see quick progress,” Umahi said during a courtesy visit to Governor Otti, assuring Otti that Abia and the South East will be proud of him.”
The Works Minister, who revealed that Abia had 11 ongoing federal road projects, said he came to examine the state of progress in the impacted projects for himself.
He highlighted some of the roads as Section One of the Enugu-Port Harcourt Express Way, which goes from Lokpanta to Umuahia’s Abia Tower (now 100% completed with a Caravan Park), and Section Two of the route, which runs from Umuahia Tower to Aba.
Others include the Rehabilitation of the Umuahia-Ikwuano to Ikot Ekpene-Umudike Road, which spans 49.2 kilometres; a piece of the Nkporo-Abiriba-Ohafia Road, which was granted in 2012 but has since been abandoned; Bende-Arochukwu-Ohafia piece One, which was given in 2018; and the Aba-Owerri Road, which was awarded in 2020.
The Minister requested Governor Otti’s assistance in resolving concerns pertaining to the construction of a caravan park in Arungwa Aba, stating that the State government should acquire the land and collaborate with the Federal Government to develop it with the private sector.
Gov. Otti responded by thanking the Minister for visiting Abia and expressing his government’s willingness to work with the Federal Government to repair federal roads in the state.
Otti lamented the predicament of motorists and commuters that use the Aba-Port Harcourt Motorway.
Otti described the roadway as a nightmare, lamenting the fact that a 30-minute ride now takes at least three hours.
As a result, he asked for immediate federal assistance to alleviate the people’s predicament.
According to him, the dual carriageway’s terrible condition “has dealt a fatal blow to the markets in Aba.”
He informed the Minister that he had previously hired a construction company, CCECC, to conduct some palliative work on the road and make one of the lanes accessible in the interim until full rehabilitation could be completed.
The Governor also informed the Minister that he would like to discuss the deteriorating Umuahia-Bende-Abriba-Ohafia federal road all the way to Arochukwu with him.
Otti noted that the federal road was first given by the Petroleum Trust Fund (PTF) under General Sani Abacha while former President Muhammadu Buhari was Chairman of the PTF, and was again re-awarded in 2011 by former President Goodluck Jonathan and likewise abandoned.
He expressed an interest in repairing the road and later returned for reimbursement.
“If I can find the money, I’d like to do the road, and he’ll reimburse us whenever he can.” We believe that we should assist the Federal Government in providing democratic dividends to our people.” Governor Otti made a statement.
Senator Onyekachi Nweobonyi, Deputy Chairman Senate Committee on Public Accounts, and B. U. Obioha, South East Director, Federal Highway, among others, accompanied the Minister on the tour.