Abia state chapter of the People’s Democratic Party ( PDP) has dragged Labour Party Presidential Candidate in the 2023 general elections, Sir Peter Obi over what he described as his silence on Gov. Alex Otti financial recklessness in Abia state.
In a statement made available to newsmen in Umuahia, by Hon. Elder Abraham Amah, Abia PDP Vice Chairman/Acting State Publicity Secretary reads:
” The attention of Abia PDP has been drawn to comments made by the presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Mr. Peter Obi on his verified X, formerly Twitter handle wherein he berated the APC-led federal government of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu and the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Mr. Nyesom Wike for earmarking the sum of N20b for the renovation and construction of official residences of Vice President Kasheem Shettima”
Not done, Mr. Peter Obi also called out the federal government for having a large contingent to the ongoing COP28 Climate Conference in Dubai and described it as a waste of scarce resources among many other criticisms he always makes on the government of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu since he assumed office on May 29, 2023.
Abia PDP understands that it is within the right of Mr. Peter Obi to offer criticism as a citizen and stakeholder in Project Nigeria, just like any other Nigerian, but we are taken aback at his selective approach to issues he chooses to weigh in on.
We are shocked that the poster child of the Labour Party and a former governor of Anambra State who rose to political fame and popularity on account of his financial prudence in the conduct of government business while serving as a governor would keep mute in the face of the financial recklessness of the only Labour Party governor in Nigeria, Alex Otti of Abia State.
For over a month, Alex Otti, the Labour Party and his government in Abia State have been in the news for the wrong reasons following his shocking revelations of how he spent humongous amounts of money on himself even in the midst of the grinding poverty that has enveloped Abia State. In the midst of the excruciating poverty which he claims he wanted to alleviate, he spent 32% of Abia’s Quarter 3 (July-September 2023) budget on himself alone.
At last count, Alex Otti told Nigerians that he spent N5.3b to run his office from his personal residence, having not moved into any of the three government Houses in the State, spent N233m on his personal feeding after sacking more than 15,000 workers from Abia Civil Service arising from the huge wage bill according to him, N2.8b as security vote even when he had said he would not take security votes as governor during the campaigns because it was a secure pipe to fritter the State’s money, spent N552m on information dissemination through his Ministry of Information and propaganda, spent N30b for the construction of a 5.6-kilometre Port Harcourt Road without following the provisions of the State’s Procurement Act among many other infractions on the law of the State. In all he spent 41% of the Q3 budget on himself, his deputy and House of Assembly and that is N10.22b of the total receivables of N25b that came into Abia State in Q3, 2023.
Yet, in all of these, the Abia PDP has not heard or seen Mr. Peter Obi caution or call Alex Otti to order even when many national political commentators and analysts have stepped into the matter to censure Alex Otti’s spendthrift behaviour and financial recklessness. Rather Mr. Peter Obi is quick to reel out figures that show how the former PDP and APC governments and the present government of President Bola Ahmed Bola Tinubu have run Nigeria aground.
The loud silence of Mr. Peter Obi is disturbing, unsettling and speaks to the hypocrisy of our ruling elites and indeed Nigerians who do not hate bad leaders generally but hate only those who are not from their political parties.
Mr. Peter Obi’s quietude suggests that he is in tacit support of what Alex Otti is doing and it also shows how he would have managed the affairs of Nigeria, perhaps if he won the presidential election.
The Abia PDP advises that the next time Mr. Peter Obi wants to call out the President and the federal government of Nigeria, he should first remove the log of wood in his eyes in Abia State where his Labour Party is in charge and running the State like a personal estate before looking to remove the speck from President Bola Tinubu’s eyes.
Abia PDP calls on all lovers of democracy to prevail upon Alex Otti and the Labour Party to be mindful of how they spend Abia money on frivolous and unnecessary expenditures.