Policy, according to Dennis Kux, is the expression of politics in action. It is a carefully planned and organised effort to shape decisions and actions in line with predetermined goals or ideals. Achieving success in policymaking involves using various methods like regulations, incentives, strategies, and interventions to steer society, governance, or organisations towards the attainment of a desired purpose.

There are many policy thrusts of Dr. Alex Otti’s administration and various stages of policy implementation which have occasioned the radical transformation being experienced in Abia today. To put them together in one article will not only be too lengthy but laborious. Hence, this article will run in volumes, with this being the first of many volumes that are to come under the topic. Let me ask you to stay tuned as I unravel the transformative policies that are shaping Abia’s renaissance under the visionary leadership of Dr. Alex Otti, OFR.

Of course, as the Special Adviser to the Governor on Policies and Interventions, it is within my purview to make public a comprehensive overview of the transformative policies guiding the administration of Abia State under the astute leadership of His Excellency, Dr. Alex Chioma Otti. Hence, this volume which is mainly an introduction will delve into the foundational elements of the current administration’s manifesto, drawing insights from Dr. Otti’s speeches, including his inaugural address, and culminating in the 2024 budget — a document that underscores the administration’s unwavering commitment to human and infrastructural development.

A striking hallmark of Dr. Alex Otti’s administration is its audacious vision and unwavering commitment to ambitious goals. The 2024 budget stands as a testament to this approach, allocating a staggering 85 per cent of the budget to capital development and 15 per cent to recurrent expenditure. This budgetary emphasis on capital development accentuates a resolute determination to revamp every sector of the government, catapulting Abia State into a new era of progress and socioeconomic prosperity.

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Interestingly, Dr. Otti recognises the critical role of professionalism in quality leadership and service delivery, hence his strategic appointment of intellectuals, experts, global figures, and individuals of high repute to drive the administration’s transformative agenda. This move aims to harness the collective expertise of a diverse team, tasked with revamping a state plagued by delayed salary payments and heaps of arrears, neglected pensioners, dilapidated infrastructure, and highly politicised human welfare.

Otti’s administration embraces a unique blend of private sector spirit and public sector mentality. This distinctive approach positions the government as an entity with a difference — a business-like administration focused on revenue generation and efficient allocation of resources towards the development of the state. The emphasis on boosting the internally generated revenue highlights the administration’s commitment to sustainable financial growth.

A closer look at the composition of the Executive Council (ExCo) reveals Dr. Otti’s foresight and strategic decision-making skills. The inclusion of individuals who are directly involved in sensitive governance aspects ensures firsthand information dissemination and enriches discussions at ExCo meetings. This masterstroke decision showcases the administration’s commitment to transparency and well-informed governance which aims at serving enormous democratic dividends to the masses.

Dr. Otti envisions building Abia State in a collaborative style with private sector partnership. His administration is committed to creating an enabling environment for investors, fostering public-private partnerships, international and multilateral collaborations, and engaging in business activities where necessary. This approach acknowledges the role of government in business, and the critical need for robust engagements with the key economic drivers, actors, and stakeholders. This is more reason he initiated the Digital Economy policy so that business people can leverage technology to optimise profit which will in turn boost the economy of the state. Acknowledging that Abia State is one of the business hubs in the country, digital economy is a transformative economic strategy to rekindle the entrepreneurship spirit inherent in our people to create socio-economic prosperity for the good of all, hence his creation of a new ministry exclusively devoted to digital economy and the development of SMEs.

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Knowing that he does not possess omniscient powers, Dr. Otti recognises and values the contributions of successful individuals and groups. The formation of a transition council, comprising individuals from diverse backgrounds, exemplifies a collaborative approach to governance. Accordingly, global and reputable teams have been assembled to advise the government strictly on economic stability and emancipation.

Within Dr. Otti’s leadership, teamwork, anchored on intellectualism and experience, has become a state policy. The harmonious collaboration of diverse backgrounds and expertise defines the administration’s approach to addressing the challenges facing Abia State. Beyond just the immediate relief the people are experiencing in road infrastructure, security, healthcare and other sectors, the success of the administration’s policies will be best judged by considering the long-term and broad-scale effects it will portend for the state in the coming years, as John F. Kennedy adduced. Indeed, ndi Abia can no longer weep because help is here!

Anokwuru, C.U., Ph.D.
Political Analyst

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