By Mazi. Godson Azu
In as much as many Abians both at home and abroad, are highly excited by the level of improvement and progressiveness of governance by the administration of HE. Dr. Alex Otti, on social infrastructure, human capital interventions and administrative capacity in Abia state it’s important to note here as a matter of deep thought and reminder, that Abians may have found a truly people’s governor. A Governor that not only understands the politics of the people, but have a deep sense of understanding about the actual needs-wants of the people in means of scarcity and poverty. It takes a reasonable and rationally informed leader to take responsibility of the immediate pains, needs and wants of the people, rather then trading political relevance at the political market places, at the expense of the poor masses, in view of solidifying political power.
The governor as the symbolic figure of leadership in the state, has to maintain focus, direction and control for a sustainable social development and economic growth in the state.
A principled leader must at all times, and at all dispositions be guided by the following qualities and actions.
Clarity of Vision:
A Principled leadership provides a clear vision for the future, outlining goals and priorities that guide his actions in governance toward stability and progress.
Consistency in Policies:
A principled leader maintains consistency in his socioeconomic policies, offering predictability that fosters confidence among citizens and investors.
A Principled leader must be bold enough to take action and responsibility. A Decisive political will ensures prompt and effective decision-making, addressing challenges and seizing opportunities for the state advancement.
Rule of Law and Accountability:
A Principled leader upholds the rule of law and promotes accountability, establishing a foundation for a just and stable society.
A principled leader emphasizes inclusivity, considering diverse perspectives and ensuring that policies benefit the entire population, and not but for a few in the corridors of power.
A principled leader must be open and transparent in all aspects of governance, most importantly through communication, which builds trust between leaders and citizens, reducing uncertainty and contributing to a stable political and economic environment.
As I have mentioned previously, that our dear Gods own state, has birthed and breed three kinds of leaders in the past 23 years of this transitional democracy. First, a Governor and leader from the business class and political marketplace, (1999-2007), he ran Abia state like a private enterprise and liquidated the state for eight years, then came his handpicked successor, a seasoned civil servant, turned public servant, (2007-2015), who refused to dance to his Godfather music, ended up running the state without a clear direction, but then built his family political empire, which transcended to his own hand-picked successor, under the guess of sub-ethnic or inward tribe balancing, they brought in an Educationist, PhD holder, an influential and semi-administrator (2015-2023), notwithstanding the connection between the new Godfather on-the-block, and the commitment to do his biddings, at a point people in the state thought that as a well educated person, in terms of academic exposure, that the governor would do better than the two previous ones, unfortunately was not the case, rather he served loyally as a humble scholar-boy governor to his school government Godfather, suddenly all hope was lost on his administration, as it actually became a political-economy conduit for draining the state commonwealth, his education and intellectuality failed him and Abians at point of needs, as most of his actions distorted the actual development of our great state. So, in a not-shall, Ndi-Abia, had entertained a known Businessman turned Political-Trader, a seasoned Civil Servant, turned Public Servant, and then an Educationist-intellectual and Semi-administrator, for 23 years of continuous governance these three personalities were unable to meet the needs and wants of the greater number of the greatest people of Abia state, both socially and economically.
Now, afterwards, Ndi Abia have chosen a new leader, a fresh governor, through a popular vote of the people in the open political market, without a Godfather baggage, this time they have a reputable seasoned banker, highly educated and trained technocrat, turned politician, one of the few new informed guys on the block of leadership across some sub-national entities in Nigeria, and In the past six months, Abians, can clearly see the difference between being, educated, exposed, self-made, trained, well connected in the world of high-value business and financial community, marrying all that with a decisive political direction, is at present giving Abia state a makeover, rebranding and shift from the past.
We hope upon hope, that the governor would remain focused, committed and determined to deliver on the mandate of the people, providing real time infrastructure development, institutional building, human capital sustainability, social security benefits, productivity and employability capabilities for NdiAbia.
Abia state is overdue in reclaiming back its place among great productive sub-nationals, as a great state of honour, as in the case of Aba, the ones upon a time acclaimed Taiwan of Africa, with many lines of productive young men and women, producing all kinds of leather goods, clothing lines, for both the huge domestic and international markets, from the 1970’s to early 2003, all that ventures has literally collapsed over the past 20 years. Now I am trusting God almighty the owner of this great state, as we begin to see a new approach to governance, driven by political and economic ideological alignment, clear understanding of the people’s needs and wants, the passion to serve Ndi Abia, vision to deliver on achievable goals, of which at the moment we can see all this attributes and characteristics imbedded on the recent actions and performance of the Governor, HE. Dr. Alex Otti, in the state, opening Abia for economic growth and social development, let all meaning Abians, friends of NdiAbia join hands in good faith to make Abia great again.
On a concluding note, it is important to remember that the meaning of Abia, which reflects four major towns; Aba, Bende, Isuikwuato, Afikpo, and the surroundings, with the motto, Gods Own State, but in its actual sense and spirituality, according to the Hebrew word, Abia means, “God is my father”, and in Arabic it means, “Great One”, so with all due respect to all Abians, may I state it here clearly that the past leaders of Abia had disrespected our “Father “ and trampled upon his greatness, but our father being a merciful God, just and faithful will do good.
A new Abia is more than ever possible in our time, “God is our Father”, we will not work alone.
Mazi. Godson. Azu is a Political Analyst, Author, Consultant and the Director at C&M. Centre for Leadership and Good Governance. UK.