ORDINARILY, to clinch a new one year on top of the previous attained age in the life of an individual is assumed as an important milestone worthy of celebration.
The importance of birthday anniversary and indeed any other, underscores its relevance in show-casing success, thanking God and in charting the way forward. However, no matter the significance, it is not every person that will like to place a feather in his cap.
There-in, lies the belief that such anniversary can only be worthy outside ostentation and should not be an avenue for intimidation or to frighten perceived or real enemies and opponents. In other words, it should be an affair. This is why the Governor of Anambra State, Chief (Dr.) Willie Maduaburochukwu Obiano has once more won the hearts and commendations of the citizens of the state for defying the elite expectations to roll out drums in celebration of his 65th birthday.
Truth, the governor has not celebrated any of his birthday anniversaries or that of his government since he found himself on the saddle of governance six years ago, in spite of excellent record of his performance. This character trait can only attest to his exceptional mould away from the culture of extravagance pervading public sector leaderships.
In this context, juxtapositioning the government, the governance and the background of the governor is compelling now, if not for anything else, at least to justify or debunk the widely held views by some schools of thought. Respectively, the groups believe that the lofty heights Obiano’s government has attained in the last six years plus, is by hard work cum training while the others share the belief that it is through sheer luck and chance.
What is common however, among these schools of thought is the underlying belief that the Akpokuedike’s administration has made an incomparable landmark in the annals of public sector governance in Nigeria and Anambra State in general which is a wonderful and commendable tribute to his attainment of 65years of sojourn on earth.
His Excellency has endured a life full of great activities, shocks and surprises as well as joys and excitement in line with various level of destiny he has so far encountered in life. There he adroitly managed and utilized to record eloquent and significant best impact in the society.
Often, behind-the-wheel feats, actions and behaviours of uncommon nature involving leaders of substance can easily be unraveled through philosophic enquiry. In the case of Willie Obiano, he grew up at Onitsha, an outstanding civilization and metropolitan hub in the colonial and post-colonial Nigeria.
The first-ever academic institution known as the Holy Trinity Primary School was founded in 1886 at Onitsha by the Reverend Father Joseph Luzts who led the Catholic Missionary Group Holy Ghost Congregation France to Onitsha.
At once, the school became the cradle of formal institution that pioneered new learning, knowledge, culture and civilization that influenced the attention of Igbo race, East and part of the South of Nigeria in 19th and 20th centuries.
Fortunately, it is in this first eminent Holy Trinity School that Willie Obiano was privileged to attend and was formally formed from 1960 or thereabout for six to eight years. Indeed, Willie and his generation were lucky to be part of the last vestiges of pupils to catch and imbibe unadulterated fire of religion, moral, academic and social discipline which the mission school was known for since its inception in 1886, down to 1970.
The school maintained its strides through high quality teaching, learning with seasoned mission administrators which waned into oblivion when government took over ownership and management of mission and other voluntary agency schools from 1970.
Although, Sir Obiano is known to have made significant excellence at various stages in his life, including higher institutions such as Christ the King College, Onitsha, University of Lagos, etc. from 1970s, nevertheless these were adjuncts that upgraded and transformed his foundation dreams, morality, and conscience into integrity, sincerity, honesty, love, charity and fear of God. These values he quietly garnered not only from his pioneer school but also from his highly esteemed and disciplined parents and mentors.
As a matter of fact, his father in particular was a teacher and an administrator of a tall order, regarded as an invaluable asset to Catholic Mission. He was the Scout-Master-General top teacher at Holy Trinity School, Onitsha, and one time headmaster of the second Primary School sited at his Aguleri home town in 1890, by the same Holy Ghost Catholic Congregation of France.
The implication is obvious, which means that Willie Obiano gained exquisite lessons from the wisdom that brought early Christian and secular civilization to his Aguleri native community and Onitsha, where he was born and grew up respectively.
Thus, welding political power from 2014, placed the governor at vantage position to spot out gray areas that pinch the society most. For sure, familiar with the terrains of Anambra State which was constituted in 1991. In consequence, what is striking most is that the virtual security challenges which prior to 2014, defied the military and civilian governments alike was serially drowned with all the wherewithal and vehemence at the disposal of his government from 2014.
The fighting and crushing criminality and their master-minds in Anambra State informed the realisation by Anambrarians and Nigerians that once equipped and mobilised, the police and indeed any other security arm of government can fight and win battles with operational and tactical efficiency.
This is against the backdrop that led to the spontaneous formation of Boys O yee, OMATA, as well as Bakassi security outfits and the community vigilante as means to defray the menacing armed robbers who raped, maimed, stole and killed while invading the victims like locusts. People then, took shelter in churches.
Today, the hitherto police commissioners that served in Anambra State from 2014, as well the incumbent one never hid their joys and excitement while basking in the euphoria of victories consequent upon the logistics unleashed to the command by the Chief Security Officer of Anambra State, Governor Willie Obiano.
The peace in the state has enabled the indigenes, visitors and residents to sleep with their two eyes closed. Onitsha has since re-assumed the status of the largest single market in West Africa with its network of industries while Nnewi noted as an international industrial hub is currently ticking with its manufactured products exported to third world nations.
Willie Obiano has done exceedingly well in various indices of measuring growth and development, numerous roads and other social infrastructure are visible at local governments and communities. Also, human development comes into play.
In this respect, the Government Secretariat under the Secretary to the State Government, Professor Solo Chukwulobelu, an ebullient economist and the Head of Service/Bureaucracy Harry Udu have ensured fast and efficient pull in the execution of Governor Obiano’s vision. No community in Anambra State today can talk of marginalisation in view of the release of N20milion to each community for development purposes.
The same thing is applicable to pensioners and public servants who receive their emolument promptly. In fact, the pensioners of Anambra Newspaper and Printing Corporation who were marginalised in the last 28 years and Anambra Broadcasting Service had all the arrears cleared which neared N1billion mark. It is only a leader with abundant Grace of God that can do that. One cannot forget teachers who receive bush/rural as well as science allowances.
Let us equally toast with this great mind, quintessential and a sexagenarian governor who effectively put into glorious application his unadulterated moral virtue and the abundant grace of God in his leadership. We thank God immensely.