2023: We Cannot Allow Few Individuals Decide Our Leaders – Etigwe Uwa Charge Abians |WATCH VIDEO
Etigwe Uwa, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), and an Abia state 2023 gubernatorial aspirant under the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), have called on Abians to shun the mantra of an anointed candidate taking over the governorship wheel of the state come 2023.
The governorship aspirant while declaring his intention to run for the 2023 gubernatorial race after consultations, stated;
“….I came to the conclusion that regrettably, our state have been held down by successive years of maladministration and a place like Aba which was the commercial nerve center of what we now know as the south east and south -south is today a shadow of itself.
“today, am happy to inform you that after all these consultations, I’ve enlisted in a movement for a restored, better and a greater Abia.
“I enjoin all Abians to arise and join this movement; we must take back Abia; Abia belongs to all of us; and no one person or a group of few people should be allowed to allocate to themselves the right to determine for all of us who our leaders would be.
“That is something we cannot allow. It is a practice that strikes at the very root and hub of who we are as Ndi Igbo and as Ndi Abia. For millennia and centuries, we’ve always been people who are republicans and democrats”.
He noted that the norm of an incumbent governor anointing a preferred candidate to succeed him, has survived because Abians allowed it believing that their votes cannot count.
Uwa cautioned Abians to change the mentality of ‘our votes do not count’ adding that power ultimately belongs to the people and with the people’s resolve, things will change.
“Over the years there have been unfolding culture of leadership selection process which is caused by an anointing by the incumbent. This has happened because Ndi Abia has allowed it to happen. To some extent, Ndi Abia may say they’ve tried their best; they may say that sometimes, they have tried to exercise their right to determine for themselves who will govern them and sometimes their votes has not really counted.
Ultimately, power belongs to the people. Whenever we get to the point that the people say enough is enough, things are definitely going to change”.
According to Uwa, he has a great burden on the current status of Abia state, which motivated him to make wide consultations, before deciding to join the movement to change the face of Abia.
“I’ve been thinking to myself, what is it that Ndi Abia can do differently? And I’ve gone round various communities….and the product of the consultations; there is a uniformed and a consistent refrain that has become manifest and that refrain is that Abia requires redemption, Abia requires transformation and that is the narrative that cuts across everywhere you go”.
The governorship hopeful lamented the bad roads condition, non-payment of salaries and pension in the state, adding that the state of Abia has caused non indigenes to ridicule indigenes even in the diaspora.
” Even those who are not from Abia, they say to us, your state needs a lot of work”.
He charged Abians to dream of a new Abia, an efficient primary health system that cuts across the entire state, well equipped health centres in all local government areas, schools equipped properly for better accomplishments, mineral resources of the state properly harnessed and utilized cuing into the proposed energy transition.
“The resources that we have under the ground today, can profit our children today if we explore them quickly if we do not, after a while, the economy will be such that it will not make any useful impact”.
He maintained that the economy of the state can become number one with foreign investors coming in to run profitable businesses without the state seeking for allocations.
“Today Abia is a revenue sharing state, we want to become a wealth creating state”, he added.
Etigwe Uwa was formally a member of the All Progressives Congress (APC).