Abia PDP accuses Otti for indefensible squandering of Abia state funds on self and other wasteful expenditures

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The attention of the Abia PDP has once again been drawn to the unconscionable, indefensible and uneconomical squandering of Abia funds by Alex Otti and more grievous, attempts to explain away the financial malfeasance in a manner that suggests that he is taking Abians for fools. Alex Otti and Abia State have been trending in the national news lately but unfortunately for the wrong reasons where irreconcilable and humongous sums of money were spent on items that would make even the worst of kleptocrats recoil in acute shock.

In all of these, the most self-defeating and insulting to the degree he wields in Economics is his defence that he is still operating as governor from his private residence because the two Government Houses and Lodge at Aba are not in good condition or were purportedly vandalised by the former government of the PDP when he spent an outrageous, unimaginable and inexplicable N5.3b in running the governor’s office located in his private residence in Q3. Nothing can be more damning and disappointing than that.

Arising from incompetence and inexperience, Alex Otti is conducting a media tour of the two Government House facilities more than five months after assumption of office to prove to the world that the residences had been vandalised by the immediate past government. If the facilities were actually vandalised by the immediate past administration, a competent public servant would have gone public with the pictures and videos of such vandalism a few days after assumption to show and credibly prove to the world why he cannot occupy the residences. Doing that after about six months shows incompetence and a motive to fritter Abia funds under the guise of an uncomfortable official residence

Falling into the pit he dug, Alex Otti forgot that he had displayed his deep-seated animus for the past administration when he openly said even before he was sworn into office that he would not touch anything used by the immediate past administration. All put together, it is clear that operating outside the three Government Houses was preplanned and the tour of the facilities is nothing but an attempt to continue to scapegoat the previous administration in a futile bid to hide incompetence and successfully fritter Abia funds.

The Abia PDP would have ignored Alex Otti and allowed him to keep compromising State policies by conducting the official business of Abia government in his private residence if he did not bring the immediate past PDP administration into the mix of his failures by asserting that the two Government Houses were vandalised.

For the records, the New Government House at Ogurube Layout, Umuahia, was completed and commissioned by Governor Okezie Ikpeazu on May 28, 2023 and made ready for the incoming administration with both new as well as the furniture used in the Old Government House moved to the newly built and expansive Abia Government House.

Thankfully and to the vindication of Abia PDP, an independent media organisation, Premium Times conducted tours of the facilities including taking a drive to Alex Otti’s private residence that he has converted to Abia Government House where official business of government is conducted and did not reveal any vandalisation but an abandonment by the new administration. We have taken the liberty to share the link to the Premium Times story so that Nigerians can see pictures of the New Government House that is not fit for residence for Alex Otti.
https://www.premiumtimesng.com/news/646440-nigerian-governor-abandons-multi-billion-naira-government-house-runs-govt-from-country-home.html

As an accomplished economist and banker he claims to be, Abia PDP and every rational mind had expected that Alex Otti would take for instance, N2b of the N5.3 he spent in running his house to retrofit the New Government and secure it for posterity and for Abians instead of allowing the edifice to lie fallow and open to rot and precipitous depreciation in value and structure due to non-usage. Or is Alex telling Abians that N2b cannot furnish the residences for his use and some of the personal staff who reside in the Government House?

If it was prudent to operate from home why did Alex Otti use N700m to refurbish the Commissioners Quarters to accommodate about 24 Commissioners but rather chose to inordinately use N5.3b to run his private bedroom office which continues even as we write.

A government that has sacked more than 15,000 of its workforce since inception purportedly on account of bloated payroll, spent only N5b on capital expenditure, more than 70 percent of the N11b on recurrent overheads on the governor alone out of the N25b it received from the Federation Allocation Account Committee, FAAC in a Quarter of a year(July -September 2023) and without adding the State Internally Generated Revenue, IGR which though has dwindled under its watch, and the Joint Allocation Account Committee, JACC between the State and 17 Local Governments which has remained opaque under his watch for six months, spent N5.3b in running the governor’s office, N233m as it claimed instead of N927m it used for the governor’s feeding all in three months of July-September 2023 has no moral justification to exist because it exists for itself and not for the people.

What is most worrisome is that Alex Otti and his operatives never miss an opportunity to hit at the previous government as the reason for their failures and unfortunately some Abians have allowed themselves to enter a default mode of yes men, accepting everything hook line and sinker.

In contrast, the immediate past administration of Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu and other past governors of the PDD extraction never converted their personal residences to the Abia Government House. In the immediate past government of Dr. Ikpeazu, all State Executive Council, SEC meetings and other State functions were conducted either in the Old Government House Umuahia or in the Government House Annexe Aba and never for once in his private residence at Umuobiakwa, Obingwa LGA. He led by example.

Abia PDP calls on Abians and good spirited Nigerians, especially those who have weighed in on the excessive misuse of Abia funds on the governor’s personal overhead to prevail upon Alex Otti to be circumspect in deploying Abian funds to his personal use, especially in this period that Abians are in dire need of economic salvation.

PDP – Power to the People!

Signed 

Hon. Elder Abraham Amah

Abia PDP Vice Chairman/Acting State Publicity Secretary


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