As reactions continue to trail the dislodgement of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Abia State, by Dr Alex Otti, of the Labour Party, after holding sway for near mobed 24 years, former Senate President and the Chairman, PDP's Board of Trustees, BoT, Senator Adolphus Wabara, has regretted that those at the helm of affairs of the state ignored the wise counsel of elders.
He attributed the fate and abysmal performance of the ruling party at the just-concluded elections to the pomposity and self over the rating of those in charge of the state.
The former Senate President who had consistently advocated a power shift to Abia North in 2023 in line with the Abia Charter of Equity that recognized power rotation, noted with pain that PDP had learnt its lesson in a hard way.
Senator Wabara said he was not surprised that his party lost Abia because when the warnings were coming those in charge did not pay heed.
” We advised the PDP but the powers that be didn't listen.
” We predicted what has happened to Abia PDP but some of us were abused and ruthlessly removed from office but we have since moved on”.
Senator Wabara who congratulated Otti on his resounding victory commended Abians for making their choice.
” I want to appreciate Abians for their choice, and also congratulate Otti who has really put up a spirited fight.
“Expectations are high on him. Abians now want to see what he can see differently, and he must not betray the confidence of the people.”
The former Senate President passionately appealed to all those who lost at the election to jettison the idea of resorting to any legal battle so as not to waste their resources and distract the Governor-elect.
” I'm appealing to all those who lost not to go to the tribunal to waste their money and distract the incoming Governor. We don't want to hear that Abia money was used to pursue matter in the court.
” I commend Professor Greg Ibe of APGA and others who had called to congratulate Otti even before the result was announced. These are really statesmen who think and wish Abia well.
” Abians have spoken and their choice must be respected. They should give peace a chance so that Otti can hit the ground running from day one”.
Similarly, the immediate-past Secretary to State Government, SSG, who served under Ikpeazu's first tenure, Dr Eme Okoro, described the party's performance at the polls as ” disastrous”.
The former SSG who was among the few elders of the party that spoke out against PDP's disregard for Abia Charter of Equity in the choice of its governorship ticket, said he was not surprised the ruling party suffered great misfortunes at the polls.
” It's very painful. I'm an integral part of this administration. As the inaugural SSG, we had dreams and visions, thinking that under the watch of a young brilliant man, that we were supposed to move the state forward into that generation of a new narrative. But so many things went wrong.
” No person anywhere in the world should attempt to play God. And if you become Governor, you are not God. If you become a Speaker of a House of Assembly, you are not God. If you become President, you are not God.
” PDP lost it somewhere along the line. The things we decided to do were left undone. If you want to be a good leader, stoop lower to conquer. Get down to the grassroots.”
The former SSG who also congratulated Otti on his emergence said that the eruption of wild jubilation across the state that greeted Otti's declaration as the Governor-elect was a confirmation that he was the choice of the people.
” There was an explosion of joy reverberating this town called Abia State capital yesterday. I was told the same thing happened in Aba and other communities in the state.
” If a greater number of people rejoiced at the failure of the PDP, it means that our performance was abysmal and a disaster.
” What happened in Umuahia on Wednesday, created an impression in me that the party I belong to was a disaster, and it's a disaster. So, we have to return to square one”.
Meanwhile, the deputy governorship candidate of the All Progressive Grand Alliance, APGA, in the March 18 governorship election in Abia State, Hon. Obinna Ichita, has described the emergence of Otti as the triumph of light over darkness.
Hon. Ichita who stated this in his congratulatory message to the Governor -elect, said his greatest joy was that the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, which had under developed the state for 24 years it held sway, had been dislodged.
The lawmaker representing Aba South state constituency in the Abia State House of Assembly said he was delighted that at last, Abia would be liberated from the hands of a few political cabals holding the state to its jugular.
” Abia, not Otti has won! This is a victory for all progressives and patriotic Abians irrespective of their party affiliations. Abia has suffered enough and I'm happy that deliverance has come at last”.
The APGA governorship running mate noted that though his party did not win, it shared a common agenda with the Labour Party ” and that is how to free Abia from political subjugation”.
Ichita expressed his readiness to support the Governor-elect to move the state forward, noting that he had remained the only opposition voice in the House resisting the rascality of the PDP-led Government.
He, therefore, called on progressive Abians to rally around Otti to rebuild Abia which he regretted, had been stagnated for decades by the ineptitude and squandermania of the ruling party.
The lawmaker expressed optimism that the Governor-elect would not betray the confidence reposed in him by millions of oppressed Abians.
” I have no doubts in me that under the in-coming Government of Alex Otti which heralds a New Abia, our workers and pensioners will be paid; our schools and hospitals will be rebuilt; and our collapsing infrastructure will be rehabilitated”.