By Douglas Okoro
Abakaliki – Mr Ogbonnaya Obasi, the Personal Assistant (PA) to Dr Ogbonnaya Onu, Minister of Science and Technology, has joined the governorship race in Ebonyi ahead of 2019 general elections.
Obasi formally declared his intention to run for the Office of Governor of Ebonyi on Wednesday in Abakaliki during a meeting of the State Working Committee (SWC) of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The News Agency of Nigeria, (NAN) reports that Obasi’s boss, Onu was the first Executive Governor of Abia, from February 1992 to December 1993.
“Let me use this opportunity to inform you all that I am in the race for the coveted office of governor of Ebonyi state come 2019.
“I have nursed this aspiration for some time now but it has become more manifest as a result of fortuitous combination of very negative acts of bad governance, narrow-mindedness, lack of genuine fear of God, brazen impunity of present regime.
“Despotic tendencies; manifest insult to elders, particularly the genuine founding fathers of our dear state, neglect of the civil and public service and general maladministration of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP)-led government in Ebonyi.
“Ebonyi needs a new style of leadership anchored on righteousness, discipline, genuine fear of God, development/people-oriented and respect for human dignity; this is what I am promising to do if elected governor of Ebony,” Obasi said.
The governorship aspirant, who wooed the SWC members ahead of the governorship primary said that he would deliver good governance.
He promised to foster peace, create job opportunities through industrial development anchored on innovative science and technology and to make agriculture more attractive if given the mandate.
Obasi, who briefed newsmen after the meeting with the APC SWC at the party’s secretariat, said his decision to run for the plum job was to bring progressive governance, expand the frontiers of governance.
He also listed youth empowerment, civil service reform, prompt payment of pensions and gratuities to retired workers, security and agriculture as critical areas of intervention if elected.
“We will rebuild our civil service, restore the local government administration and make it more functional and more service-driven to meet the yearnings of the people at the grassroots.
“We will rebuild ailing industries and our moribund factories through adequate funding and putting competent hands in order to create employment opportunities and revenue generation,” he added.
Obasi, who hails from the same Uburu community in Ohaozara Local Government Area with the incumbent governor, Chief Dave Umahi promised to serve for one tenure if elected governor in 2019 to complete the tenure of Ebonyi South Senatorial District.
He debunked alleged claims that he was being foisted on the party by the minister and other powerful politicians within the APC.
“Contrary to claims that I am being sponsored by Onu and powerful elders and leaders of our party, my decision to run for the governorship is personal.
“This is based on my conviction that I posses the requisite experience, capacity and capability to rescue our people from bad governance.
“Serving as PA to the first class and international personality of Dr Onu, the size and importance of the office of the national chairman of defunct All Nigerians People’s Party (ANPPP), coupled with serving as PA to the minister entails a great deal of experience.
“The raising of memos, the workshops and seminars involved foreign trips which took me to not less than 25 countries of the world, including America, Russia, China, Japan among others makes me see myself qualified for any political assignment.
“I served as the chairman of the 2015 Kebbi state APC governorship appeal panel and in addition to so many other positions I have held which have given me enough experience to lead the state.
“I am in the race as a full-fledged aspirant; everything I have done all my live is to learn obedience, loyalty and integrity and these are the virtues I will deploy to the service of my people,” he added.