10 successes, failures of Abia Gov. Ikpeazu: Workers owed for 7 months, others

Governor Okezie Ikpeazu

Road Construction: The government has completed some roads in the state, including the Umuola and Winners Junction Road in Aba, commissioned by former President Olusegun Obasanjo last December. These roads cut across the three geopolitical zones of the state. It is constructing a new bridge at Okonu Afia, Ohafia, and has done a realignment of the bridge at Umunneochi.

The government is presently working on 47 active sites. There are plans between the state and the neighbouring Akwa Ibom to jointly rehabilitate the shared federal roads. Abia State is also pioneering the use of cement technology (or what experts call rigid pavement technology in road construction). This involves casting with concrete over a mass of iron before asphalting the road. The idea is to extend the lifespan of the roads.

Establishment of Trade Centers: Abia is establishing trade centres where old professions are to be revived. This will be supervised and handled by Mexicans and Filipinos. The idea is for them to begin to teach Abia children the rudiments of the old craft works like carpentry, masonry, house wring so that the state can produce household items without going abroad to import them. Also traders will be taught such handiwork as carpentry, plumbing, electrical, tiling etc. The idea is to help the artisans add some professionalism and education to their trade.

Education: The governor started work on the construction of the permanent site of Abia Polytechnic at Osisioma area of Aba. On his 51st birthday last year, he launched the Friends of Abia Schools Adoption Initiative (FASAI) to renovate the worst primary schools in the 17 Local Government Areas of the State. He did this by calling on his friends to help him give face-lift to primary schools in serious state of dilapidation.  Under its Universal Basic Education Provisions, the Abia State Government has launched a pilot arrangement to feed 30,000 primary school pupils three times in a week in 10 local council Areas. Pupils are to be fed on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

Aba Industrial Clusters/Skill Acquisition Programme: The government has concluded plans to launch construction work on the Abia Industrial Clusters starting with Aba. It is currently procuring equipment needed for the clusters. The aim is to mechanize and automate the process of leather-making and other artisanship works in Abia State.

The Aba Industrial Cluster would involve 40,000 shoemakers who are capable of producing 1000 shoes daily. Also, the government has resuscitated three moribund technical schools in the state to run the skills acquisition programme. The goal is to develop the trade sector in Abia so that the state could make all the shoes for school children, the military and the paramilitary in Nigeria instead of importing them.

Agriculture: The government is collaborating with the State of Georgia in the U.S. in agriculture, especially in the area of Green House farming and poultry. Georgia State is the poultry headquarters of the world. It says it will soon unveil other initiatives in terms of poultry farming in which the American technology and expertise will be brought to bear in Abia State. This will have positive effect in the economy and the productive capacity of the state’s agricultural sector.


Slow pace of work: Most roads that the government started are yet to be completed apart from Ominyi drive and a few others. Even the road leading to the governor’s village, Ururuka from Obikabia Junction is yet to be completed.

Poor refuse disposal record: The governor, despite making efforts, has not been able to tackle the issue of environmental sanitation in the state. The problem of gabbage disposal in the commercial city of Aba remains intractable. Although there has been improvement in the area, Aba is still relatively dirty and this has been blamed on the poor funding of ASEPA, the agency responsible for refuse disposal in the state. The agency lacks adequate gabbage disposal equipment, vehicles, staff and other logistics to properly carry out its duties.

Arrears of salaries: Workers welfare is hit an all-time low in many agencies and parastatals in the state: For example, Abia Polytechnic workers and staff of state university teaching hospital went on Christmas break without pay as they are being owed seven months salaries.  Similarly, local government workers and staff of the state broadcasting media outfit, BCA, have not been paid for about months.

Health: The governor has not done anything noticeable in the health sector. The state University Teaching Hospital is almost comatose. The primary health care service is in a poor and shabby condition across the state.

Local government election: The Local government election contrary to his promise was everything but free and fair. The election was described by the opposition, monitoring groups and other analysts as a charade.

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