My good people of Abia State, I bring you warm felicitations on the occasion of this year’s Easter celebration on behalf of my wife, Priscilla, and our children.
This Easter is particularly special for me because it is the Easter following our victory at the polls where our people spoke eloquently and gallantly with their votes. I thank the Almighty God for the wonderful privilege to share the good news of the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ from the dead with you.
Even when the evil forces that had held the state bound in the last 24 years rose once again to steal our victory, God in His infinite mercy said, no, and literally stood against them. We were subsequently declared winner of the election by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) after four days.
The celebrations in the street of Abia State that followed our declaration by INEC will remain fresh in our minds for a very long time to come. The dizzying blaring of car horns; the joyous cries, dances, screams of ‘Ellu P’ and other sudden outbursts of exhilarating displays by our people are hallmarks of that historic day.
As you are well aware, Easter is about the love of God. God Almighty demonstrated His love towards mankind by giving His only Son as a sacrifice so that mankind can be redeemed from eternal death. John 3:16 puts it succinctly: “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, that whosoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” The story of Easter, indeed, is the greatest story of love ever told.
I see a correlation between the story of Easter and the story of Abia State. Just like our Lord Jesus Christ conquered death and rose from the dead, Abia State, by the grace of God, has defeated her enemies and has risen from the stranglehold of underdevelopment, deprivation and poverty to prosperity and transformation.
As we had stated earlier, I wish to use the opportunity of this Easter day to reiterate that we will not disappoint you on the promises that we made to you. My team and I are committed to the task of rebuilding our dear State, so she can take her place of pride in the comity of progressive states in Nigeria and truly assume her appellation as God’s Own State.
May the joy of this Easter celebration endure in your lives. Amen.
Thank you, and God bless you.
DR. ALEX C. OTTI, OFR
GOVERNOR-ELECT, ABIA STATE