Abia guber: Otti insists on running despite zoning

By IAfrica
In Nigeria
Aug 13th, 2014

alex ottiDiamond Bank Plc’s Group Managing Director, Alex Otti, yesterday assured that he would not drop his ambition to become the governorship candidate of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Abia State despite the party’s decision to zone the ticket to Abia South.

Otti hails from Abia Central, the same zone as the incumbent governor, Chief Theodore Orji.

Speculations are rife that some of the aspirants outside the preferred zone would toe the party line and drop out of the race in obedience to the expanded state caucus of the party, which overwhelmingly endorsed the zoning arrangement.

However, the banker, in a chat with journalists in Umuahia, said he was still in the race, stressing that zoning would not prevent him from exercising his democratic right to aspire to become the chief executive of Abia State.

According to him, “zoning or no zoning, I will run,” even as he added that he considered himself as a well qualified Abian to succeed Orji come May 2015.

The governorship aspirant argued that zoning has never at any point in time stopped people from contesting election at the state and national level, noting that even when the PDP zoned the presidency, it did not stop aspirants from every other zones getting into the race.

The caucus of PDP in Abia state had on July 20 resolved to zone the governorship ticket to Abia South in the interest of equity, justice and peace and a week later, the decision was endorsed by the expanded caucus of the party, which met in Umuahia.

The resolution has, however, raised a lot of furore with some party members and even traditional rulers kicking against the zoning arrangement.

Two aspirants from outside the preferred zone have so far signified their intention to become the flag bearer of PDP in the 2015 gubernatorial poll in Abia. They are Otti from Abia Central and Dr Uchechukwu Ogah from Abia North, who is the President of Masters Energy Group.

A group identified as Coalition of Abia Professionals has been promoting the candidacy of Otti, whom they upheld as the favored candidate to take over the reins of power from the incumbent governor.

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