From Boniface Okoro, Umuahia
Abia State Commissioner for Information and Culture, Prince Okey Kanu, says the Dr Alex Otti-led administration was in a hurry to develop the state which is why the Governor has applied his leg to the speed pedal.
“The the state government is in a hurry to rebuild Abia. The Governor has his legs strictly on the speed accelerator pedal to deliver, as they say, the dividends of democracy to Nde Abia,” the Commissioner said last Thursday when he received in audience, the State Executive Committee of Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Abia State Council, promising that the government was ready to partner any group that would add value governance in the state.
“We, in a most intentional manner, will want to partner with those that will add value to governance and to the rebuilding process that this government is overseeing,” Kanu told his guests.
“We won’t hesitate to partner with you. What we want at all times is a group that will add value to what we are doing. I believe as members of the Fourth Estate of the Realm, that your job is cut out for you, you know what to do when it comes to partnering with the state government.
“We want to assure that if you do all you need to do, we, on our part, would not hesitate to reciprocate. So that it will be a symbiotic relationship. I enjoin you to do your best. If everybody does his or her best, collectively we would have been able to achieve something tangible. So, on that note, I will encourage to help to foster and strengthen the relationship between your body and the state government,” he said.
According to him, the state government was delivering on the six thematic and critical areas where the Governor declared a state of emergency and even more upon his inauguration.
“His Excellency, Dr. Alex Otti, through his guidance and peculiar style of governance, has been able to drive change with a lot of achievements in the field of health, education, road infrastructure, Internally-Generated Revenue, waste disposal and security.
“While the other areas are recording achievements, these are the areas, in terms of strategic planning, he decided to focus on and quite a lot has happened in these areas. These are areas where I will consider brick and mortar areas of governance that are tangible, because we have the intangible.
Explaining achievements recorded in the intangible field, Kanu said “that a properly constituted Due Process Office that ensures that there is due process in governance, the Ease of Doing Business processes, a Monitoring and Evaluation Unit have been set up.
“These intangible areas are areas where the governor has been able to put processes in place, try to put the governance architecture that will drive the rest of what we are doing.
You will agree with me that this is the type of stuff that has been absent from this state. These are intangibles in government; they are directed to help the tangible areas to survive.
“So, His Excellency, Dr. Alex Otti, OFR, has through these processes tried to put a governance architecture that is strong and such strong governance architecture is now driving the rest of the things we are doing,” the Commissioner said.
According to him, the government expects its friends to help in their own individual ways, to keep the public be abreast of its activities in the thematic areas and beyond. “Once these things are known, we would have said yes, that we have gotten the support of whatever platform these individuals are using to operate. They will all add up to the same thing if we do the right thing and achieve success at the end of the day.
“In this rebuilding process, we require everybody’s support and input; and we believe that once this comes from all the professional groups, we will be able to build the necessary goodwill. Once that goodwill is in place, we will we have delivered on our promises,” Kanu said.
Earlier, the Chairman of Abia State Council of NUJ, Comrade Victor Ndukwe, had told the Commissioner that the visit was to formally congratulate him on his appointment as th State Commissioner for Information and Culture and to assure him of the readiness of journalists practicing in the state to assist the government achieve its developmental objectives through factual and objective information dissemination.
Comrade Ndukwe informed the Commissioner that the Council was facing teething accommodation problems and urged government bail out the Council by doing what it could to complete the NUJ permanent site under construction.
In a Vote of Thanks, the Senior Special Assistant to the NUJ President in charge of Zone C, (South East), Ezeogo Boniface Okoro, appreciated the Commissioner for receiving them and called government to always carry journalists in the state along and provide access to government officials to enable them to disseminate proper information to the populace.