…Assures of adequate security
Stephen Ukandu, Umuahia
Governor Alex Otti, has urged the people and residents of Abia State to share love with one another and extend help to the needy in the spirit of Christmas.
The Governor who stated this in his Christmas message, also cautioned against reckless driving and consumption of harmful substances and excess alcohol.
Otti in the message made available to Ikengaonline said: “As we celebrate, we must imbibe the true spirit of Christmas, sharing the joy and blessings of the season with everyone around us.”
It further read: “There is no better time to love and care for our friends and neighbours than now. As members of the New Abia family, we have a sacred duty to remember the less privileged amongst us, and others who due to no fault of life, may not have much for themselves and their families.
“In addition to sharing what we have with those in need, we are also encouraged to be very responsible and disciplined in all that we do. Reckless driving, excessive consumption of alcoholic beverages, consumption of hard drugs and illicit substances, and acts that may endanger our lives, health and well-being must be avoided. “
Otti urged returnees to use the season to make peace and embark on community development projects in their various communities.
“I call for peace in all the communities. Traditional rulers, leaders of development and age-grade associations, women and youth groups are encouraged to come together in the spirit of Christmas to drive the process of reconciliation in places where there had been disputes as nothing can be achieved in an atmosphere of strife and social anxiety.
“At all times, we must bear in mind that maintaining the peace in our homes and communities is everyone’s responsibility but as stakeholders, we must be at the forefront.
“This is also a good time to initiate community development projects. It is gratifying to note that many influential community leaders have bought into our message of holistic development in every part of the state and would be launching several projects this Christmas to drive human capital development, expand community infrastructure and support the vulnerable.
“I congratulate every community that would be launching or commissioning one project or the other this Christmas. Let me also encourage all of us to always think of what we can do for our villages and clans all the time.”
Otti promised to provide all the necessary assistance for investors in any part of the state, and urged Abians to invest at home.
“While we shall continue to work as a government to make every part of the state attractive to domestic and foreign investors, we are reminded that much more can be achieved when the elites in the communities get involved, driving the development process according to the most pressing needs of the people.
“For those who may wish to invest or expand their investments in any part of the state, this is the right time. The relevant government offices shall remain open to offer useful assistance when called upon. I am specially appealing to our brothers and sisters to think home. We are making all parts of the state an attractive investment destination by improving security, building public infrastructure, and developing the stock of human capital.
“Abia is our home and we must work collectively to build it into the great society we have always dreamt of.”
The Governor assured residents and visitors to the state of adequate security during and after the Yuletide, saying that water-tight security arrangements had been put in place.
“Security remains a priority for the state and we have taken extraordinary measures to guarantee the safety of life and property in all parts of the state. All security formations in the state have been placed on high alert to respond promptly to distress calls.
“We have also expanded our intelligence gathering network to thwart any criminal operations before they are executed. We also encourage community leaders to work closely with the formal security agencies in setting up their independent security arrangements. My assurance, umu nne m, is that every part of the state is safe and secure.”
Gov. Otti apologised for some inconveniences the on-going road constructions in the state state could cause travelers, assuring that by next Christmas most of the roads would have been fixed.
“I’m aware that many families travelling home for Christmas experienced difficulties along some of the roads where reconstruction and rehabilitation works are on-going. We regret the inconveniences and promise that by the time you come home next year, things will be a lot different.
“To assist commuters this season, we have deployed personnel of the Abia State Road Traffic and Safety Management Agency and the State Emergency Services at strategic roads to help direct the flow of traffic and support those in emergency situations.
“We also have other personnel of federal and state agencies to support our people as they travel across the state this Christmas. You are encouraged to cooperate with them at all times as they will be on round-the-clock operations this season.”