Otti Restates Resolve to Anchor His Govt. on Christian Principles, Values
Assures Abians of God-fearing Governance Fair to All
Governor Alex Otti has restated his resolve to anchor his government on Christian principles, saying that he is “a steward who must discharge the functions of the office in fairness to all people”.
Speaking before a huge crowd of Adventists that thronged the Enyimba Stadium Aba on Saturday, October 4, 2023 for the centenary anniversary celebration of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Eastern Nigeria, Otti vowed to govern Abia with the fear of God.
“As the early Adventists realised, the best way of preparing ourselves for eternity is by making the most of the gifts and resources available to us to improve the lots of others,” he said.
To this end, the Abia governor said that he was committed to “applying the resources available to me to fight the menace of poverty and material wretchedness (which are) sad realities that have weakened the faith of many”.
He noted that the goal of making heaven would be achieved by “working steadfastly to advance the Kingdom of God through our works and how we apply what we have been given in thanksgiving and service, especially to the poor”.
The Abia governor, who is an Adventist, paid glowing tributes to the pioneer missionaries that brought the faith to Eastern Nigeria with Aba as the starting point where the seed of faith was sowed by Jesse Clifford.
He also paid tributes to indigenous Church leaders who took the torch from the missionaries and ensured it was kept aglow for a century now and still counting.
“I am greatly inspired by the legacies and footprints the SDA has left in several communities in Nigeria and in this region over the past hundred years.
Otti, who delivered his inspiring speech in the presence of the General Conference President of the SDA, Pastor Ted Wilson, his wife Nancy, and the Church leaders in West Africa and Nigeria, said that his government, just like the church “is very much interested in education”.
He said that his experience and conviction has solidified his belief that education “presents the surest path to overcoming the burden of poverty and the bondages that come with ignorance”.
“We shall therefore collectively explore proper channels of partnership where the government can work with the church and other interested organisations to expand the frontiers of learning for millions of our young ones whose future, I am very passionate about,” he said.
Not only that, the Abia governor also stated that his administration was “keen to partner with the church in other social service areas, particularly health and poverty alleviation, especially for our women in rural communities”.
“In line with the above, my doors will always be open to engage with the leaders of the church and those of other faith from time to time on areas of shared interests as we work in unity to serve God’s children in love,” he said.
Otti underscored the significance of Aba in the history of SDA in Eastern Nigeria, saying that the city would regain its glory which was lost due to neglect.
“I am glad that Aba is rising once again and shall in no time regain its traditional reputation as a city that supports the growth and development of individuals, businesses and institutions, without fear or favour,” he stated.
In his sermon entitled “Almost Home”, the World leader and GC President of SDA, Pastor Wilson, charged the faithful to remain steadfast in their faith while awaiting the second coming of Jesus Christ.
“Don’t let the devil distract you from your mission, for we are almost at home. Do not allow anything to distract you from your mission or your goal,” he said, adding that Christ might not wait for another 100 years before the end of time.
Pastor Wilson, who appeared to have been briefed that there is no love lost between the present and the immediate past governor of Abia hence he sought to reconcile them.
He reminded both Otti and Ikpeazu that they are both Adventists and should therefore see themselves as brothers who share the same faith and belief, and should, therefore, work together for the good of Abia.