The truth indeed recently triumphed over propaganda in Abia state when the state chapter of the People’s Democratic party, PDP in an infantile Public Relations gambit apologized to Abians for their less than abysmal performance and failures while in power and for the massive corruption that characterized the locust years when they held sway as the ruling party in Abia state. By their own admission, the party ran the state aground and in the process lost the confidence and goodwill of Abians which inadvertently, accounted for their loss of the governorship seat to Labour Party at the last general elections.

The recent statement by the vocal faction of the hugely fractionised Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Abia state, claiming that Governor Alex Otti’s suspension of the Commissioner for Health, Dr. Ngozi Okonkwo, was a result of their advocacy for good governance, is a classic case of obtuse grandstanding. This attempt to rewrite history and mask their own failures and corruption -ladden administrations is a desperate move by a party that has lost its bearing.

For 24 years, the PDP held Abia state hostage, pillaging its resources, destroying its institutions, and pushing millions its citizens into the poverty lane. Their reign was marked by mindless corruption, nepotism, impunity and a callous disregard for the welfare of the people. The damage they inflicted on the state is still being uncovered, and the facts emerging from the Panel of Inquiry sessions in Umuahia are a stark reminder of their misdeeds.

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The PDP’s corruption and looting of Abia state’s resources are well-documented. Billions of naira meant for development projects were diverted into private pockets, while the state’s infrastructure and institutions were left to decay. The KPMG Forensic Audit Report
which the PDP tried to suppress, exposed the massive fraud and financial recklessness that characterized the immediate past PDP-led administration in Abia state. For instance ,up till the moment of writing this piece,the team that went in search of the phantom Abia Airport that gulped over N10 billion Naira even before approval was sought from the then Abia House of Assembly are yet to locate the Airport. The many cases of financial malfeasance recorded in that report against the PDP led-administration are scandalous to say the least. So pray, tell me , how can a political party with such an embarrassing profile be advocating for accountability and good governance. ? Truth be told, Abians are too sophisticated to fall for such deceit .

The PDP’s destruction of Abia state’s institutions is another dark chapter in their reign of impunity. They politicized the civil service, compromised the judiciary, and converted state-owned enterprises into personal fiefdoms. Many Secondary and Primary schools across the state were converted to shopping malls or any other such ventures that caught the fancy of their members in government and their cronies. The state’s education and healthcare systems were left in shambles, while the infrastructure was allowed to decay.

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The PDP’s policies and actions or inactions of successive PDP governors did indeed pauperize Abia state citizens, leaving them in a state of poverty and despair. Unemployment soared, businesses were crippled, and the state’s economy was stagnant. The people of Abia state were denied basic amenities, while the PDP leaders lived in opulence.

Governor Alex Otti’s administration has brought a new dawn to Abia state, marking a departure from the PDP’s destructive era. His commitment to good governance, transparency, and accountability has raised the bar for leadership in the state.

Governor Otti’s suspension of the Commissioner for Health, Dr. Ngozi Okonkwo therefore, demonstrates his administration’s zero-tolerance policy for misconduct by government appointees. This bold action sends a clear message that Abia state will no longer be a haven for impunity by those who hold public office.

Consequently, Ndi Abia have seen the difference between a government that cares for it’s citizens,and one that looted their commonwealth. Abians are witnesses to the transformative power of good governance in all ramifications and they will not be swayed by PDP’s empty claims and propaganda.

Governor Alex Otti’s administration will continue to set new standards for good governance, transparency and accountability undeterred by the feeble attempts by the PDP to discredit his policies.

Prince Okey Kanu is the Commissioner for information and Culture and writes from Umuahia .

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