The handover process from the outgoing Abia State Government to Dr Alex Otti’s team has hit a snag due to the government’s delay in availing them of the necessary handover documents.
This was disclosed by the Leader of Dr Alex Otti’s representatives in the Abia Government’s Handover Committee, Rev. Fr. Christian Anokwuru, in an interview with newsmen in Umuahia on Thursday.
“It is expected that the outgoing administration ought to avail the governor-elect with the handover documents early enough to enable him to study the content before May 29.
“The administration has only a few weeks in office, so by now the handover documents, covering the government’s activities from 2015 to April 2023, ought to have been ready,” Anokwuru said.
Anokwuru added that the government committee seemed to be more preoccupied with preparations for the swearing-in ceremony rather than the documents, which could impede the governors-elect’s plans for a smooth transition.
“If the government insists that the handover documents would only be made available on May 29, it means the governor-elect has to take another period of time to study them. For us from the governor-elect, we are not getting the maximum cooperation we were promised by the government,” he emphasised.
Anokwuru’s statement is at variance with the inaugural speech by Deputy Governor Oko Chukwu, who had promised that the state government would avail the incoming government of all it needs, including documents, to enable it to take off smoothly.
Anokwuru expressed disappointment that the present stance of the State Government was not living up to its promise.
On allegations of looting of government properties by top functionaries in the twilight of Governor Okezie Ikpeazu’s administration, Fr. Anokwuru said that “it is unthinkable and hard to believe that government can look away and watch its properties being looted.”
He added that the government’s failure to either deny, condemn or warn against the alleged criminal act seemed to reinforce the allegation.
Anokwuru called for caution and the need to apply morality in the transition process, expressing his worries about the alleged employment racketeering currently going on in MDAs. He also decried the outgoing administration’s decision to employ workers in its last days in office despite struggling to pay salaries due to lean resources.
Dr Alex Otti is mentally and psychologically prepared to hit the ground running from May 29, Anokwuru said, expressing confidence that all appointments would be made based on merit, competence, integrity, fairness, and equity.
Anokwuru is leading eight members nominated by Otti to work with the State Government’s Handover Committee, headed by the Secretary to the State Government, Mr Chris Ezem.