OVOM MECHANIC CLUSTER: You lied, the project was fully completed by Ikpeazu – Ememanka chides Emetu, Abia Deputy Governor.

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Last week, precisely, on the 26th of June, 2023, the Deputy Governor of Abia State, Engr Ikechukwu Emetu visited the Ovom Industrial Cluster, more popularly known as the Ovom Mechanic Village at Ovom, Obingwa LGA.

While speaking to journalists after his visit, the Deputy Governor blamed the Ikpeazu administration for “failing to complete the project due to their lukewarm attitude” and promised that the Ott administration will complete the project.

This statement is very mischievous and extremely unfortunate.
It is obvious that one of the major policy strategies of the Otti administration is to blame the Ikpeazu for everything under the sun.
In their books, Ikpeazu did absolutely nothing for 8 years. He built no single road, paid no single salary to any worker and removed no single dirt from the streets of Abia State. The only thing Ikpeazu’s administration did in 8 years is to mismanage the resources of the State.

Unbeknownst to the Deputy Governor, the Ovom Mechanic Village project is a precious baby of the administration of former Governor Okezie Ikpeazu.
It was Ikpeazu who conceived the idea of creating another “Alaoji Spare Parts Market”. It was his desire to rid the streets of Aba of the menace of unregulated presence of motor mechanics, technicians and sellers of technical spare parts.
In his usual style, Ikpeazu stated that he would not chase away any mechanic from the streets until he provides an alternative place for their business.

From the acquisition of land by the State Government, to the sourcing of a private sector partner to the provision of all manner of institutional support from the State Government to the commencement of actual construction at the site and to the completion of the project, Ikpeazu personally was part of the project from start to finish.
The State Ministry of Industries, Promotions and Development was directly supervising the project.

Ikpeazu undertook countless inspection visits to the project site, the last one being the meeting he held with the Leadership of the Mechanics and Spare Parts Dealers on the need for them to relocate their businesses to the new place.
I was part of all visits by the Governor and I recall clearly that the traders made an appeal to the Governor to reduce the cost of acquiring the shops to enable them move in.

As at last year, over 600 shops had been completed 100% at the site!

When the Deputy Governor arrived there last week, he saw a ready and completed prohect.

Indeed, 2 days after the visit of the Deputy Governor, the Ministry of Industries and the Private Sector partner, set up billboards in Aba calling for buyers of the shops.

So if the project wasn’t completed, according to the Deputy Governor, what is the Ministry advertising for sale, or did the Otti administration use 2 days to complete the project?

It is an open secret that the Otti administration hasn’t done anything at all at the project site, apart from that visit of the Deputy Governor. So how come the shops there are available for sale?

Oga Deputy Governor Sir, before you embark on such visits, kindly avail yourself of proper briefing from the Civil Service Bureaucracy. If you had received briefing from the now suspended Permanent Secretary of the Ministry or any of the Directors in the Ministry, you wouldn’t have made that unfortunate statement about the project not being completed. They would have explained to you the true situation on ground.

Few days ago, the State Government organized a reception for Enyimba International Football Club of Aba for winning the Nigerian Super Cup. At the event, the Deputy Governor blamed the Ikpeazu administration for owing the team for 3 months!
The three months he gleefully referred to included the Month of May, 2023 which the Otti administration received the allocation just few days ago.
The Ikpeazu administration ran Enyimba FC for 8 years, together with 3 other state owned clubs that play in the Nigerian Soccer League. Out of the 8 years, the only salary owed was for the month of March and April 2023!
By the time Enyimba won the Super Cup, Otti had spent barely 2 weeks in office!
In their world, it takes 2 weeks to get a football team ready to play for one full soccer season!

If only you people will appreciate that the business of governance is a continuum, there will be better coordination.

If you choose to continue to live in denial of basic facts, then unguarded and ill-advised statements will continue to fly around.
These people may wake up one day and either claim that they built the Osisioma Flyover or maybe suspend it!

Whether officials of the Otti administration like it or not, and no matter how hard they try, they cannot obliterate the achievements and strides recorded by the administration of Dr Okezie Ikpeazu.

Sir Onyebuchi Ememanka is Spokesman to former Governor Okezie Ikpeazu.

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