Minister of Works, Dave Umahi, has commended Governor of Abia State, Alex Otti, over his laudable achievements of his administration.
He said that the visible developments in the state in the past 100 days are indications that the governor will deliver.
Umahi who was in Abia to inspect federal road projects in the state said he was impressed with the performances of Otti so far, expressing optimism that Abia would witness notable transformation in the months ahead.
The former Ebonyi State Governor said even though he was not an apostle of 100 days celebration, Abia residents and indeed the South East were blessed to have Governor Otti.
He said, “The Governor’s handwork is already showing.
“Let me thank you for a lot of improvement that you have done in the State just few months now.
“I don’t believe in 100 days in office, I don’t believe in two years in office, I believe in working for the people and letting the people see what you are doing.
“There is nothing meaningful that anybody who intends to work can achieve in 100 days. You may not even design a meaningful project in 100 days. But we have been seeing what you’ve been doing because you’ve been around, you understand the pains of your people.
“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, while assuring that Otti will make Abia and the South East proud.”
The Works Minister who disclosed that Abia had 11 on-going federal road projects in Abia, said he came to see for himself the state of progress in the affected projects.
He identified some of the roads as Section One of the Enugu -Port Harcourt Express Way which runs from Lokpanta to Abia Tower in Umuahia (now 100% per cent completed with a Trailer Park); and Section Two of the road which runs from Umuahia Tower to Aba.
Others include the Rehabilitation of Umuahia-Ikwuano to Ikot Ekpene-Umudike Road with a length of 49.2 kilometers; a section of Nkporo-Abiriba-Ohafia Road, awarded in 2012, that has been abandoned; Bende-Arochukwu-Ohafia section one, awarded in 2018; Aba-Owerri Road, awarded in 2020; among others.
The Minister solicited Governor Otti’s help to sort out the issues affecting the building of a trailer park at Arungwa Aba, saying that the State government should acquire the place and partner with the Federal Government to develop it with the private sector.
In his response, Otti thanked the Minister for visiting Abia and expressed his government’s readiness to partner the Federal Government in fixing the federal roads in the state.
Otti decried the plight of motorists and commuters plying Aba -Port Harcourt Express Way.
Describing the highway as a nightmare, Otti regretted that a journey of 30 minutes now takes people not less than three hours to complete.
He, therefore, pleaded for urgent federal intervention to mitigate the plights of the people.
According to him, the deplorable condition of the dual carriageway “has dealt a deadly blow to the markets in Aba”.
He informed the Minister that he had already engaged a construction company, CCECC, to do some palliative works on the road and make one of the lanes at least passable pending full rehabilitation.
The Governor also informed the Minister that he would also like to engage with him on the dilapidated Umuahia-Bende-Abriba-Ohafia federal road all the way to Arochukwu.
Otti recalled that the federal road which was first awarded by the Petroleum Trust Fund (PTF) when former President Muhammadu Buhari was the Chairman of PTF, under General Sani Abacha, was abandoned and later re-awarded in 2011 by erstwhile President Goodluck Jonathan and also abandoned.
He indicated interest in fixing the road and later came for reimbursement.
“If I’m able to find money, I will like to do the road and whenever he is able to, he will reimburse us. We believe that we should support the Federal Government in delivering dividends of democracy to our people.” Governor Otti remarked.
The Minister was accompanied in the visit by Senator Onyekachi Nweobonyi, Deputy Chairman Senate Committee on Public Accounts; and B. U. Obioha, South East Director, Federal Highway, among others.