‘No one after lighting a lamp covers it with a vessel or puts it under a veil. But he sets it on a lampstand so that those who enter in may see the light. ’The above are the exact words of the master himself. The overlord Jesus Christ, son of God, made the avowal in Luke Chapter 8, verse 16.
Monday, October 20th, 2014 in Umuahia the capital of Abia State, witnessed a spate of project revelations with conviviality of exceptional kind. Without this, many people far and wide Abia State, would not have believed that the eventide of Ochendo’s administration will be busy, building and raising projects of all types.
As it happened, Umuahia South, part of the capital city hosted the Governor in a series of these unveilings.
In his untiring efforts to decongest the capital city, the Ogwumabiri Umuahia, the main market has travelled to Ubani, a suburb of the capital city, while the industrial market and timber dealers are now comfortably housed in Azueke Ndume, another suburb.
Another city clogger is the proliferation of motor parks in all nooks and corners. The Ochendo administration, visionary and environmentally alert, built another ultra-modern motor park at Ohiya, that could take the mighty and lowly without bursting at the seams. There are special areas for luxury buses from all parts of the world in this new place. Besides, there are multiple shops of all sizes and decent spaces for food vendors and restaurants. There are modern conveniences and an executive office for the NURTW. It decongests the city and provides a respectable and comfortable movement for travelers with the waiting Ochendo Youth Empowerment cars to move people into the park and back to the city.
Next door was the Ohiya Spare Parts Market and internal roads built to allow these spare part service providers and mechanics, easy movement in and out of the hustling arena.
As one of its policy thrusts to synergize with the private sector to boost entrepreneurial activities, the ebullient Governor and his cabinet members moved to Mgbarakuma, a subunit of Ubakala, host of the Umuahia South L G A headquarters to cut the tapes of a modern petrochemical industry with multiple industrial projections owned by Etugo Oil and Gas concerns, an upcoming business initiative. These projects were commissioned with fanfare.
A day after, the Governor strolled to Ndume Otuka Primary School, venue of the next wonderland to be unveiled. Photographs of the old structures are still there to bear witness to this new image of the model school that adorns the former St. Ann’s Primary School Ahieke Ndume premises. This model structure as testified by the MC of the occasion, is too good for a primary school, as it bears the semblance of a university. This model school structure is a photo-type located in all the 17 Local Government Areas. Some local governments who have the need have more than one of such structures. The movement took off to Afugiri Primary School.
This weeklong unveilings were interrupted by an Abuja trip where the busy Governor attended some important meetings. He jetted back home on Friday when the movement berthed at Nigeria Naval School of Logistics at Owerrinta where the state government built internal ring roads to help naval administration and operation. This strategic and scholastic school is of strategic importance to the state as it adds to the security network that collaborated with other security agencies in our horror moments of the past. These fine understanding between government and security units have raised the safety ante. Not satisfied with half measures, the governor was yet to host the Chief of Naval Staff and his entourage of highly placed officers in the Southeast and South-south naval installations at the Executive Chamber. Amid brilliant speeches by both parties, His Excellency, Sir T A Orji handed over the Certificate of Occupancy of the Naval Guest House built for the
Navy to Gen. Usman Jubril. This ended the activities of Friday, October 24th, giving the officers of government a false feeling of a quiet weekend but that was not to be as they were called up the next day for two important projects. A memorial foundation was laid for the first indigenous military Head of State of Nigeria, Major General Aguiyi Ironsi, built by his son Amb. Johnson, so many years after his death. The generous governor who encourages growth and gratitude made a handsome donation of 5 million Naira.
Saturday, October 25th, presented another day of wonders as more surprises awaited the peace-loving Abians. It is an incontrovertible fact that The Governor of Abia State has in all ways and means demonstrated his intent to revolutionize the health sector. The Abia Specialist and Diagnostic Center in a complex synergy with Mecure Laboratories of India, are located in multiple annexes with up to date health equipment that could be found in Europe and the Americas.
Amachara Specialist Hospital is one of these annexes. Formally known as Amachara Methodist Hospital, started in 1929 by the missionary and has gone through historic changes. If it is possible for the pioneering officers to touch base again, they will swear that the present place is not what they left due to what has been placed on ground by the ingenuity of our visionary Governor. Amachara is gleaming with red roofs housing many installations. These are the 100 bed hospital, one of the ten new initiatives in 10 LGAs. Others are the Chest unit, hostel for House Officers, modern pharmacy and spectacularly, a research center that will focus on HIV, Malaria and the all-consuming Ebola, among others.
The people of Amachara with their widest grins ever and colourful displays acknowledged the works of Ochendo, endorsing the biblical prognostication in proverbs chapter 14, verse 28, which says ‘in the multitude of people is the king’s honour, but in the lack of people is the destruction of the prince.
It is unfortunate that in a place where an executive is striving so hard to bequeath legacies, some who for eight years fiddled like Nero while Rome burnt have the impudence to deride and deny such substantial achievements. We know them and what will befall them. It just a matter of time.
The difference is clear. People of Abia and visitors keep asking if Ochendo is going for 3rd term? If not, why is he still building and constructing?
It is nothing new to us in Abia. The Ochendo giant strides demonstrate the vow of a man who came to make changes that will improve the lot of greater majority rather than self.