Emmanuel Ugwu-Nwogo in Umuahia
The Abia State Labour Party (LP) yesterday elected a former bank chief and renowned economist, Mr. Alex Otti, as its governorship candidate for the 2023 general election.
Otti, who joined LP last month following his dissatisfaction with the goings-on in his former party, the All Progressives Congress (APC), was returned unopposed at the party’s primaries held in Umuahia to elect governorship and National Assembly candidates.
The Returning Officer, Innocent Okeke, who is also the Labour Party’s national vice-chairman, Southeast, said Otti polled a total of 454 affirmative votes to emerge the standard bearer of the workers’ party.
With Labour Party’s 2023 governorship ticket, Otti is now set to contest the governorship seat for the third consecutive time since 2015.
The former bank chief in his acceptance speech said he felt elated to be given the privilege to bear the banner of Labour Party, adding that his desire to put Abia State on the path of development remains unquenchable.
He declared that “a movement has started,” which would defy any obstacle to free Abia State from the hands of “the unconscionable cabal” that has wrecked the state and stagnated its growth over the years.
The governorship candidate promised that he would wipe away the tears from the eyes of workers and pensioners whose salaries, pensions and gratuities have remained a nagging problem.
He assured the state that if elected the next governor of the state in 2023, he would, within 12 months, clear all backlogs of salaries, pensions and gratuities accumulated by successive administrations.
Otti promised not to fail to fulfill his promise of off-setting all arrears of salaries, pension and gratuities, adding that all it would take is “political will, honesty and transparency that are presently lacking in the state governance.”
He also promised to serve Abia State as governor without collecting salary, reduce cost of governance, enthrone good governance devoid of greed and corruption, adding, “I will use your money to work for you.”
Otti urged the Abia people to “rise up and join the movement” to liberate their beloved state from bad governance by using the next 21 days to get their permanent voters cards (PVCs) and get ready to vote out bad governance in 2023.