Abia @ 32: Govt rules out awards, says it’s time to reset state
* Oby Ezekwesili to deliver anniversary lecture, unveil new orientation agency
By Steve Oko
Abia State Government has ruled out the usual awards of honour to distinguished personalities during the forthcoming 32nd anniversary of the creation of the state scheduled for August 23 to 29.
According to the State Government, the usual jamboree that characterised the anniversary celebration in the past would no longer feature in the spirit of the new Abia.
Abia SSG, Prof Kalu (right); with Information Commissioner, Prince Kanu (left)
Abia was created on August 27, 1991 by the former Head of State, Gen. Ibrahim Babangida (retd).
Secretary to the State Government, SSG, Professor Kenneth Kalu; and the Commissioner for Information, Prince Okey Kanu, who addressed a press conference Tuesday in Umuahia, said this year’s celebration would mark the begging of a departure from the old order.
According to them the administration of Gov. Alex Otti has come to make Abia work for all, and not for few opportunists to enjoy the state resources while others starve.
They urged Abians to “re-commit to Abia for the good of all”.
” The way forward is for civil servants to be committed to duty and for Government to use the state resources to work for the people”, Professor Kalu declared.
The SSG who gave the theme of this year’s anniversary as : ” Abia: Hitting the Re-set Button”, said the one -week celebration would begin from Wednesday, August 23 and end Tuesday August 29.
According to him, the anniversary will begin with a visit to orphanage homes and hospitals in the three senatorial zones across the state by the wife of the Governor to distribute aids to the inmates as well as those in hospitals.
He said there would be Jumat service on Friday at the Mosques and interdenominational church service on Sunday at Dominion Church,Okpara Square Umuahia.
The SSG also hinted that there would be a novelty match on Friday between the Executive and the Legislative arms of the State Government .
Saturday and Monday would witness special anniversary sanitation exercise, and Executive Council meeting respectively, he added.
The SSG added that former Minister for Education and Good Governance Advocate, Mrs Oby Ezekwesili, would deliver the anniversary lecture on the 29th August at the International Conference Centre Umuahia.
He added that the lecture would be followed by the unveiling of the new Abia Orientation Agency.
In his contribution, the Information Commissioner, Prince Kalu, said the new Abia had begun, stressing that Gov. Otti will no longer follow the old partner that impoverished the state.
Responding to a question on why Government decided to rule out awards to individuals, the Commissioner said it would be an irony for a Government that was preaching change to begin to confer awards to the same persons that held the state down.