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ABIA: It’s Time To Return To Orji Kalu’s Era Where LG Chairmen Had Access To Funds — University Don Challenges Otti



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Professor Kalu Ukoha, a university don, has appealed to Abia State Governor Alex Otti to return the affairs of the local government areas in the state to the Orji Uzor Kalu era where council chairmen had total access to their finances for easy development of the state.
According to him, the local government area— which is the third tier of government was completely ignored by those that succeeded Orji Kalu since 2007.
“We had a functioning local government area that opened up rural roads across the state during the time of Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu. Most of them awarded and executed contracts, employed workers and paid salaries every month. It was shocking that those that succeeded him could not continue it given room for criminality to strive in rural areas. It is time to resuscitate our local government system and allow democracy to strive.
“Orji Uzor Kalu from my investigations allowed them to strive without tempering their allocations and that allowed them to execute quality projects like health centres, rural roads and many more. This is the best way to be in touch with the people at the grassroots.
“During the period I was in Ohafia,
ANPP (All Nigeria Peoples Party) had a councillor in the person of Mr. Udonsi Eke Kalu from Okon, Alliance for Democracy councillor in the person of Mrs. Grace Agbara from Ameke Abiriba, NDP councillor in the person of Mr. Eke Idika Uwa from Akanu Ukwu, and others from ANPP were Abacha from Nkporo, and Hillary from Ania Ward. Others came from PDP; that was democracy in action. What suddenly changed? It is time to get right again.
“I read where the then chairman of Ohafia local government area, Barr. Emeka Kalu said they brought Zenith Bank, Ecobank and micro finance banks to Ohafia because the allocation from the federal government was domiciled in Ohafia and no more Umuahia, as it were.
“Orji Uzor Kalu gave them free hand to employ Ohafia people into the local government system. They completed Okon Aku Health Centre through their councillor, Hon. Udensi Eke Kalu, built Iyi Akarani Bridge Asaga and the contract was awarded to one Prince Ndubuisi Onugu. He did asphalting and opened the Ohafia Ring Road that transversed through the late Chief Ojigwe’s House up to Timber Shed Road, Ebem Ohafia, and this has made it possible for  people going to Asaga, Okon, Amangwu, Ndi Orieke, Akanu, Ndi Uduma, Abia, Arochukwu and so on to have alternative road whenever there is holdup at Ebem Park. He also built the Ebem Daily Market; recovered Egbe Mburumaja erosion site in Akanu, adjacent High Chief Uche Ogboso’s house. Bought down Abia hill through the invitation of Dr. Uchendu, then PG of Abia Community. At Isiama, constructed the dual drainage from General Hospital, Amaekpu, close to Hon. Sampson Anaga’s house at Okagwe. Without the drainage on both sides of the road, probably, most probably, the road would have collapsed. He rebuilt Abiriba Customary Court and Ekpekuma Health Centre. Built Iroyi Bridge at Nkporo; started Nkporo Police Station, and renovated many schools in Ohafia LGA. Attracted all the health centres in Ohafia LGA. Brought peace at Eziafor Ohafia without compromise. Within the two years in office, he graded all the wards in Ohafia and that was made possible because Senator Orji Uzor Kalu gave them a free hand to operate.
“The story is the same in the other local government areas. We need to return to that era where government is handled by the locals at the rural level to youth restiveness, unemployment and insecurity. We need to return to that Orji Uzor Kalu era, he said.

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