…Pledge to line behind Soludo
LAWMAKERS of the 7th legislature of Anambra State have said that ex-governor, Willie Obiano will be remembered for his good heart, philosophical and visionary approach to governmental issues. They said the citizenry won’t be unfair to him because he had done his beat and history will be kind to him.
Some of the lawmakers in their separate post inauguration speeches, said in spite of few shortcomings, the former governor did well especially in placing the state on a pedestal for greater heights.
Lawrence Chukwuweike Ezeudu who represents Dunukofia State Constituency in the House of Assembly said in Ex-governor Willie Obiano’s administration, people criticised him for giving a lot of young people jobs by making them his political appointees. He said giving jobs to youths were part and parcel of the security Anambra State is enjoying at the moment.
Ezeudu said some of the youths who were employed by Chief Obiano as political appointees can now boast of cottage industries and other small scale enterprises, stressing that without Obiano, many of the youth would have been jobless which according to him, would have escalated insecurity in the state.
Ezeudu noted also that at the moment, the state is enjoying nightlife and businesses are springing up as evident in new shopping malls and national brands like Shop Rite, Roban Stores, Everyday Super Market and a host of others doing businesses in a very tranquil environment because of the security deposits of the Obiano administration.
He said also that ex-governor, Obiano’s agricultural revolution cannot be overemphasised as seen in the evolution of Anambra Rice and other remarkable achievements in the agric sector during his regime, adding that history will be fair to him and Anambra people will not judge him too hard.
The lawmaker however pointed out that even though Obiano had laid a solid foundation for the new governor, much is still being expected from Professor Charles Chukwuma Soludo. He said ndi Anambra do not expect an average performance from him especially now that the state is an oil-producing state, has an airport and other money-yielding facilities.
According to him, Obiano increased the revenue base of the state with over 300% compared to what it was at the inception of his administration. He tasked the new governor whom he said is a famous economist to scale up the revenue base of the state to N5billion per annum without over-taxing the masses and blocking revenue leakages.
Ezeudu said, “Our tomorrow is brighter with Prof. Charles Chukwuma Soludo. As legislators, our eagle eyes will be there watching him. We are not planning to make his administration ungovernable for him but we are there to oversight the governor and to see to it that his agenda which the people voted must be implemented to the fullest and all hands must be on deck to support his administration for the interest of ndi Anambra and to make sure that he must practice what he has been preaching to the people of Anambra State.”
Meanwhile Nonso Smart Okafor of Nnewi-North State Constituency believes there are certain areas Soludo’s predecessor did very well, especially bequeathing an airport to ndi Anambra. Another area he lauded Obiano for the Anambra State Health Insurance Scheme where he said Obiano provided medical care to thousands of people who could not access it due to exorbitant hospital bills.
Again Okafor said Obiano should be commended very well for not owing workers’ salaries from the inception of his administration till the end of it unlike what obtains in other states of the federation where governors owe workers’ salaries for as long as they care. He said another significant accomplishment of the Obiano administration was the light-up Anambra project.
The lawmaker said even though a humongous cost was attached to the Light-Up Anambra Project, it helped tremendously to fight insecurity across the state. Although he observed that the environment witnessed refuse dumps at various junctions across the state, he said such were not proper in the 21st century.
He said touting in Onitsha and other parts of Anambra State is something the new governor should frontally tackle with all the vigor it deserves. As the Deputy Chairman, House of Assembly Committee on IGR, he believes that the revenues collected by the touts do not get into government purse and that there is a background of negative IGR drive in the state which he said does not crystal down to what goes into government purse.