The Indigenous People of Aba Ngwa,
an umbrella body of the 24 native communities of Aba North and South Local Government Areas have disagreed with Governor Alex Otti on his proposed Mayoral appointments of non-indegens in the two LGAs, describing it as ‘not only unconstitutional but also an aberration’.
This was contained in a Communique issued by the Group at the end of their meeting at Osusu Aba Town Hall on Thursday, October 19, 2023, signed by Mr. Ogechukwu Ogbonna, Mr. Chintua Nwagba and Engr. Obinna Greg, and made available to the media.
The Communique stated emphatically that Aba is owned by the indigenous people drawn from the 24 Communities of Aba-la-Ohazu, and that if Governor Otti must appoint non-indegens as ‘Mayors’ of Aba North and South LGAs, he should equally do same in other LGAs across the State, especially in Umuahia, Bende and Arochukwu.
The Communique further expressed the disappointment of the Indigenous People of Aba on what they identified as a deliberate act of the Governor to exclude Aba in his appointments into the State Executive Council as well as leaderships of the various markets in Aba.
The Communique reads in full:
COMMUNIQUE ISSUED BY THE INDIGENOUS PEOPLE OF ABA NGWA ON THURSDAY 19TH OCTOBER, 2023
The Indigenous People of Aba Ngwa, the umbrella body of the 24 indigenous communities of Aba North and Aba South met on Thursday, October 19, 2023 at Osusu Aba Town Hall. Arising from the well-attended meeting, the Forum issued the following resolutions.
- That we acknowledge that Dr Alex Otti is the duly elected Governor of Abia State whose duties, functions and actions are defined and guided by the Constitution of Nigeria and some other extant laws.
- That Aba is owned by the indigenous people drawn from the 24 communities of Aba-la-Ohazu.
- That we express our utmost disappointment at the comment credited to Dr Alex Otti, the Governor of Abia State, wherein he described Aba as a no-man’s land.
- That we are greatly worried that Aba has been deliberately excluded by the Governor in his appointments into the State Executive Council and in the leadership of the markets.
- That the proposed appointment of a ‘Mayor of Aba’ is not only unconstitutional but also an aberration.
- That appointing a non-indigene as the Transition Committee Chairman of Aba is against the Abia State Local Government Transition Edict of 2002 which stipulates that the person appointed as a chairman shall be a native of the local government area.
- That appointing a non-indigene as the said ‘Mayor of Aba’, which has been said to be unconstitutional, is an insult on the sensibilities of the peaceful and hard-working indigenous people of Aba.
- That the actions of the Governor of Abia State in relation to appointments are tantamount to pushing the indigenous people of Aba into extinction, which is totally unacceptable to us.
- That we shall resist any attempt capable of inciting violence in Aba which the actions and utterances of the Governor are pointing towards.
- That in line with the old saying that he who comes to equity must come with clean hands, should the Governor plan to unconstitutionally foist a non-indigene on Aba as a Transition Committee chairman, he should do so in Umuahia, Bende, Arochukwu and other local government areas.
- That asking people who are not comfortable with the planned appointment of a non-indigene Mayor of Aba to go and hit their heads on the wall, is unbecoming of a governor elected by the people and capable of causing civil unrest in Aba.
- That we hereby advise the governor, in the spirit of equity and fairness, to balance his appointments among the ethnic extractions that make up Abia State.
- Mr Ogechukwu Ogbonna (Obama)
- Mr Chintua Nwagba
- Engr Obinna Greg
For and on behalf Indigenous People of Aba Ngwa