In the recently released “Abia State Third Quarter (July – September) 2023 Budget Performance” report, available on the state government’s website, Governor Alex Otti’s spending patterns have come under scrutiny.
The report discloses that Governor Otti allocated a staggering N927 million in just three months, covering expenses such as refreshments/meals, honorarium, allowances, and welfare packages for key officials. Notably, N223,389,889.84 was allocated to refreshment and meals, while honorarium and sitting allowances for government officials amounted to N305,400,000.00 within the same period.
Additionally, the report indicates that the government disbursed N397,520,734.00 for welfare packages and spent a substantial N737,922,661.25 on the purchase of motor vehicles, without specifying the quantity or recipients. Trucks and buses were also procured, with expenses reaching N362,804,050.00 and N400,890,000.00, respectively.
In a notable contrast, the report reveals a modest N25 million investment in the repair of public schools across the state. This revelation raises concerns, especially considering the reported dilapidated state of many public primary and secondary schools in Abia. Described as “eyesores” in multiple online reports, these institutions suffer from various issues such as leaking roofs, broken furniture, and abandoned structures, highlighting a pressing need for government intervention in the education sector.