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ORJI SIGNS 2012 BUDGET, RESHUFFLES CABINET

By NBF News
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By ANAYO OKOLI
UMUAHIA- Governor Theodore Orji of Abia State has signed into law the 2012 Appropriation Bill with a promise to implement effectively the budget.

Governor Orji had on December 19, 2011, presented before the House of Assembly a budget of N122, 390, 433, 920.00.

However, the House of Assembly increased it to N129, 959, 325, 170. 00.

This came as the governor effected a cabinet reshuffle and also appointed two new commissioners, including Dr. Eze Chikamnayo as Commissioner for Information and Strategy.

In his remarks before the budget was signed, speaker of the House, Chief Ude Oko Chukwu, explained that the increase in the budget was prompted by the need 'to adequately provide for the payment of the new minimum wage, transformation of Aba City, revival of our ailing industries, creation of enabling environment in the oil and gas industry'.

Swearing-in the new commissioner and announcing the swapping of some, including those he recalled from suspension, Governor Orji warned them against double loyalty, threatening to sack any political appointee with questionable loyalty.

He said: 'I will not tolerate double loyalty. Your loyalty must be 100 percent. We have promised to transform Abia, and that will be by generating ideas that will stand the test of time.' so that when we leave governance we can come back to Abia and the people will hail us', Orji warned.

He also warned that governance ' is not about carting away money but using the peoples money to work for them, and if you are not prepared to work with me I will push you aside'.

'Security is top on our priority, and any person toying with security is toying with Abia state. Any person being involved in trying to send us back to the ugly days of insecurity in Abia state we are ready to deal with the person. We have a responsibility to maintain peace and security in Abia state, and we cannot afford to fail.

'Every government official is expected to help sustain security because it is when security is sustained that we can function effectively', the Governor said.

The newly sworn in Commissioners were Mr. Eze Chikamnayo, Information and Strategy, former Chief of Staff, Mazi Donatus Okorie, now Commissioner for Urban Renewal; and the former Special Adviser on Special Duties, Chief Ukpai Agwu Ukpai, was appointed Commissioner for Transport.

In the minor cabinet reshuffle announced by the Governor saw the former Commissioner for Information, Chief Don Ubani moved to Petroleum, while Mr. Paul Mba formerly of Youth Development moved to the Ministry of Lands while the former occupant, Chief Sam Onuigbo is was moved to Finance.