Governor Alex Otti of Abia State

Owaza to host Abia’s first industrial park

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*Otti to perform groundbreaking ceremony Sept. 30

From Boniface Okoro, Umuahia

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Alex Otti

Abia State government says it was planning to build an innovative and industrial park, the first of its kind in Nigeria.

The State governor, Dr Alex Otti, who made this public, said the Abia Innovation and Industrial Park would be sited at the oil-rich Owaza community in Ukwa West Local Government Area.   

Otti said the park which he would perform the ground breaking ceremony on September 30, would comprise manufacturing companies, oil and gas manufacturing companies and a refinery, among others, adding that his government would leverage on the presence of gas in Owaza to generate electricity for the Ukwa people. Owaza is harbouring oil companies doing oil exploration and exploitation in the area.

The Governor, while inaugurating the 1.2 kilometre Umuokomiri Obehie Community, told Abians that the project which would be 90 per cent funded by the private sector while the state would provide the balance of 10 per cent, has generated a lot of interests, especially from the Federal Government.

He added that the take-off funds were already available.  

Otti said government would reactivate the Ogwe Golden Chicken, construct Owaza road and other roads; and also empower Ukwa youths, as he had promised during his campaigns, stressing that his administration would not just extract resources from Ukwa West but would also give back to the people.

 The Umuokomiri road was reconstructed by the state government through the Abia State Oil-Producing Areas Development Commission (ASOPADEC) which Governor Otti described as an important development partner that would play a major role in his Abia transformation agenda.

He disclosed that he had to staved off pressures from various prominent interests who either opposed the appointment or wanted the position of the ASOPADEC General Manager, currently occupied by Ven. Dr. Joshua Onyeike, and expressed delight that his decision was indeed a good one.

Speaking at the function, the ASOPADEC General Manager, Ven. Dr. Joshua Onyeike, described the realization of the 1.2km Umuokomiri Obehie road as a dream come true for the people as the road had hitherto been impassable for decades due to negligence by past administrations.

Onyeike said that the road was strategically located in the heart of Asa land, as it houses the iconic Asa Civic Centre, ASOPADEC area office complex, High Court and Customary Court complexes, as well as the Ukwa West Town Planning Authority office, among other important landmarks in the area.

According to the interventionist agency head, the completion of the road has ended years of misery and ameliorated the sufferings of people plying the road, even as it would boost economic activities in the area.

The GM further revealed that the commission has also completed a motorized power borehole and reticulation at Umuebulungwu Asa and another water project at Isii Mkporobe in Ukwa East with many other projects at different stages of completion.

He thanked the Governor for finding him worthy to share in his vision on infrastructural development and sustainable economic growth which have set the state on the path of greatness and for supporting the commission to live up to its billings.

In their separate speeches, the Ukwa West Labour Party Chairman, Elder I.O. Dike and the President-General of Asa Development Union, Dr. I.K. Ajuzieogu, applauded the Governor for appointing Ukwa sons and daughters into positions of trust, while listing some of their challenges to include the deplorable condition of Ugwati-Umuekechi-Umuiku-Oberete road and reviving of Ogwe Golden Chicken. They also requested the state to build a skill acquisition centre to meaningfully engage their youths, among others.

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