By Dennis Agbo
Second Republic Governor of old Anambra State, Senator Jim Nwobodo, has charged governors of the South-East zone to make haste and establish regional security in the mode of Amotekun without delay.
Nwobodo lamented that there were many deaths in the region as a result of insecurity, noting that community policing had been there without addressing the situation.
He said that the only thing the governors can do now is to bravely establish regional security outfit and ensure that all the State Houses of Assembly in the zone passed laws to back it up.
Nwobodo decried that people in the zone no longer go to the farms because of insecurity in their domains.
Nwobodo spoke at the 7th to 11th convocation ceremony of Ebonyi State University, EBSU, where he was conferred with an award of Doctor of Law (LLD Honoris Causa) on Saturday in Abakaliki.
He used the opportunity to advocate for a multi-campus structure, noting that it helps to promote grassroots education, create jobs and afford the less privileged opportunities to attend higher education.
Nwobodo said: “My advice to our leaders, particularly the governors is that they should be bold and take things straight once their conscience tells them that what they are doing is right. The job of a leader is the security and welfare of his people. If you must lead, you must secure them, you must show them you care for them and the only way you can care for them is you don’t joke with them.
“There is a difference between being careful and being afraid. I want our governors to work as a team and build unity. I want them to take seriously the issue of security because we have lost many lives and I think that I really like what the Southwest governors did by coming together and introducing joint security code-named Operation Amatekun and they succeeded.
“All their Houses of Assembly have worked on the law and they passed it and it had been signed into law. I am proud of that. Our own governors think differently but I disagree with them. They are talking about community policing or whatever it is called – community policing has been there before now, community policing will continue to be there.
“What I am saying as an elder statesman is that they should take complete control of the security of our people without clashing with the police and in doing that they should follow the example of the South West, there is nothing wrong in doing what is good. If I am doing something and somebody has come up with something better I will follow it. I lose nothing by doing that; in fact, it shows intelligent to see what is good and follow it.
“So what they should do is exactly what the west has done, get their Houses to pass laws and use these laws to form a block to protect your people. Protection is not easy and nobody wants to joke with his life. Take for instance what is happening now with coronavirus – the world is shaking, the whole world is shaking because of life; this one is not by gun this is just virus that attacks you and kills and they are taking measures all over the world to stop it.”
On the Establishment of the former Anambra State University of Science and Technology, ASUTECH, which has now metamorphosed into three Universities of Nnamdi Azikwe University Awka, Ebonyi State University Abakaliki and Enugu State University of Science and Technology, ESUT, Nwobodo charged the grandaunts to be positive with life.
“I am proud that I was the first to establish a University of Technology in Nigeria and nobody else. I did it and when I was doing it people were laughing; the federal government laughed at me and how much did I use to start it – N3 million. Three million naira I used to start three campuses: one million for each of the three campuses, and it was like a play and we started growing and money started coming because no parents – no father, no mother will joke with the education of his or her child,” Nwobodo said.
In his speech, Governor Dave Umahi of Ebonyi state said that he was a product of Nwobodo, being among the first graduates of ASUTECH.
Umahi also disclosed that the South East Governor will launch a regional security outfit before the end of April 2020.
Vice-Chancellor of EBSU, Professor Chigozie Ogbu said that since he took over the leadership of the University, his team of management had focused on improving academic and research.
He explained that the objective of his administration was to develop the University to rank among the best citadel of learning in the world and appealed to the proprietors of Nigerian Universities to support the university managements to restore discipline, obedience to rules, and dignity of labour in Nigeria universities.