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OPINION: Abia North Deserves a Senator, He is OUK

By Peter Eze

We have a senator in Abia North Senatorial Zone whose chief concern is re-election and enriching himself alongside his sponsors while claiming other people’s projects. He’s shown no interest in the actual legislature or improving people’s lives.

In fact, he seems utterly indifferent to human suffering. He has incurred public stigma to himself that many voters in Abia state, including his party people, are wondering why Mao Ohuabunwa is still the senator of Abia North Senatorial zone.

So what are Ohuabunwa’s records?

In his four years as a senator, he made a thousand and one promises and fulfilled none. The painful and heartbreaking part of the whole thing is his zero efforts in instituting/attracting anything remarkable.

Instead of attracting developments, propaganda upon propaganda is being sold out to members of the public. All we have on grounds were roads being constructed on social media and newspapers. All we saw were poor flag off ceremonies and then abandoned projects.

Specifically, the dilapidated Arochukwu-Ohafia-road leading to his hometown is impassable and in 2017 he promised that by the quarter of 2018, the road would be a done deal since he claimed a provision has been made for it in the 2017 budget. But unsurprisingly, they were all lies as usual.

Without the intervention of the former governor of the state, Dr Orji Uzor Kalu (OUK) whose close relationship with the federal government caused the NDDC to award the road for construction to Heartland Construction company, the road would have remained in its pitiful state.

Ohuabunwa’s townsmen in Arochukwu are still thanking OUK for his personal intervention that necessitated the Akwa Ibom State government and the NDDC to making the Ikpe IkotNkone/Obotme/Arochukwu Road available to Ndi Arochukwu. With no shame, Senator Mao Ohuabunwa plies the same route to his hometown.

Now that it’s time for the election, Ohuabunwa makes noise about re-election and has resorted to claiming projects in Abia North, when in fact he’s done nothing and attempted nothing. His Aro kinsmen are angry he turned out to be a disaster and waste to Abia North.

In fairness to the ‘Frying Pan Senator’, – a name given to him by his constituents after he distributed frying pans to women as empowerment – Mao Ohuabunwa’s only achievement in his four-year stay in the national assembly is to chair “primary healthcare and communicable diseases committee” in the Senate, even though his constituents never received any healthcare benefit.

Aside from lawmaking, a senator is expected to be a beacon of hope for his constituents in so many ways.

Voters really need to look at who’s fit to serve in the Senate before electing one. This is because a senator without capacity is no senator.

Abia North deserves a senator who will improve on decaying infrastructure of the zone and who can guarantee every constituents’ access to quality healthcare and who believes that the constituency must be leading on human capital development–not just pay lip service to the cause.

We deserve a senator who will advocate for equal opportunity at the center and bring home what belongs to Abia North and Ndigbo in general.

We need a senator who can contribute to the improvement of the quality of schools in the zone and won’t settle for the bare minimum.

Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu will be that Senator. He has the capacity!

A news article that recently appeared on a tabloid asked “ What does Kalu want again? He has been a two-term governor. In business, he is a global brand and Forbes Billionaire. What more would he do as a senator?

My response is that though Kalu has accomplished a lot, there’s more to do. Being a man of influence, Abia North need Kalu for their own benefit.

Performance in the Senate is a matter of influence, it is a place where people with influence can actually get things done. Looking at Abia North, the only candidate running for election to be at the upper chamber, who has influence, and who has a global network and reach is Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu.

He is the only one we know that can engage the legislature and executive and they will listen. He is among the very few in Igbo land who has a long-standing friendship with President Muhammadu Buhari. Kalu is the only one of influence and voters must put that influence to the benefit of Abia state in particular and Igbo land in general

The fact remains that Abia north has real problems that deserve real solutions – roads, public schools, family-supporting jobs, clean drinking water. Perhaps if the frying pan senator hadn’t pandered away billions accrued to Abia North and shared with his co-sponsors, they could have stayed ahead.

Call it Mao Ohuabunwa’s wasted years, but I believe Abia North deserves a senator who will put the constituency and families ahead of self-advancement, someone who will fight for an economy where the people get the benefits and rewards they deserve. To get there, we’ve got to vote differently. And the surest way to achieve this is by electing OUK

Dr Orji Uzor Kalu is a house hold name, and yet he hasn’t taken anything for granted in his run for Senate. He has already hit the campaign trail hard with tens of campaign events in Abia State.

His event schedules show that despite his huge fan base and acceptance, he takes nothing for granted. Many roads in Abia North have also been reconstructed through the efforts of Kalu not withstanding he is not yet a senator.

For attracting federal presence to Abia North through the facilitation of Bende-Afam-Ohafia-Arochukwu roads, Kalu has helped Abia North receive fair share of federal presence.

The former governor has also confirmed that other roads including Ututu, Nkpa, Ugwueke, Item, Abiriba, Nkporo, Ohafia, Acha, Abam 1 and Abam 2 would be attended to by the NDDC this year.

He is also working fervently to bring polytechnics in Abia North. For attracting more than 30 roads in total in Abia North even as a non-serving senator;for putting politics aside and getting the job done OUK has proven beyond expectations of what he would eventually do when officially elected.

Igbo people not even Abia North are well confident of the good works of their eminent son, OUK, in diverse areas of endeavor including attraction of social amenities, youth empowerment and development, sustenance of cultural heritage, effective community development, health care initiatives, political and community leadership, philanthropy, youth employment and more.

There is an existing history in Nigerian politics of voters crossing partisan lines to reject candidates who have failed abysmally and whom they object to, or to support candidates whom they believe their delivery capacity. There are contests where it is ethically necessary to put aside partisanship and back a candidate from another party.

There are also times when it is politically practical to abandon your party line for one election. The Abia North contest meets the ethical standard and the practical standard. While many wise PDP and APGA members recognize this, others only need to recognize the reality of Abia North current circumstance.

When something is headed in the wrong direction, you don’t push harder in the same direction. You must have the courage to change direction.

That direction is voting the APC candidate in the forthcoming Abia North Senatorial election. Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu is the man with the capacity to transform Abia North. Vote OUK!

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