By Tony Nwankwo
Like a long-awaited eastern star, United Kingdom-based businessman, lawyer and politician, Chief Ike Oligbo (Ike Edeke), has come to test the political landscape of Anambra State.
He has indicated plans to contest the 2021 governorship election of the state on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Making his quest known recently, at a press conference in Awka, Oligbo said he would return Anambra to the path of growth and development by providing quality education. With a compulsory Nine-year education programme to improve the rate of literacy in the state Oligbo says he will provide a formidable platform for PDP to win the governorship election in Anambra State in 2021.
Addressing his supporters in his first public declaration, after donating and commissioning party offices for grassroots campaigns in Idemili North LGA, Oligbo said: “My dear good people of Anambra State, I feel highly privileged to publicly declare to serve you as the chief steward for Anambra State in 2021. God keeping us alive, I promise to follow in the footsteps of former Governor Peter Obi, to match and infact surpass his laudable achievements in this State”, he said. Unveiling his development plan tagged `My Contract with Ndi Anambra’, Oligbo continued: “Let me say, with all sense of responsibility and modesty, that I am very much aware of the enormity of work we must do to put our dear state back to work, to harness the many bright minds that we are blessed with, in the areas of education, civil service, entrepreneurship and sports, amongst others.
He recalled that while some of the administrations in the state had performed poorly, others had recorded average performances, but he singled out the administration of Mr. Peter Obi, whom he said, made the most appreciable impact in building the state through his integrated approach to governance, predicated on the highest degree of probity and accountability – the most vital ingredients, he said that are necessary to pull Anambra back from the woods. “It is my intention to reinvent that administration and improve on the standard already set by Obi”, he said.
“My administration will make quality education a priority, ensuring that adequate facilities are provided together with an enabling environment to assist pupils and students in their quest for excellence. We will rehabilitate schools and recruit qualified teachers to enhance learning. I will ensure full implementation of the national minimum wage and pay salaries as and when due, provide fire-fighting trucks and adequate funding and training for fire officials in the state.
He revealed: “We will ensure that new interstate and local roads are constructed and the dilapidated ones rehabilitated to aid commercial activities in the state. We will pay attention to electricity generation and distribution which has become a leech on how businesses are done in the state. “We are a proud people, and Anambra will stand tall again under my watch”, he said, promising to build hospitals and clinics in every community and provide state-of-the-art medical equipment in hospitals. “A situation where Anambra people go out of the state or even abroad for medical attention will be a thing of the past”, he stressed.
“I intend to use my international experience and contacts to attract investors into Anambra to create jobs in key sectors for our teeming youths and lift the state economy and industries as well as provide vocational colleges for those who could not complete formal education”.
Reacting to the clamour for zoning the governorship position to Anambra southern senatorial zone, he said zoning the governorship position in the state would engender division and destroy the unity that exists amongst Anambra people. “Zoning is not right. Anambra people are one, so talking about zoning will create disunity amongst us”, he said
The governorship hopeful says he would ensure that the proposed airport at Umueri in Anambra East Local Government Area comes to fruition.