…Obiano has transformed the state – James Eze
…Anambra ought to have been better – PDP
By Clifford Ndujihe & Vincent Ujumadu
AS Governor Willie Obiano marks his seven years in office today, a chieftain of PDP, Dr. Obiora Okonkwo and the Anambra State Chairman of the party, Chief Ndubuisi Nwobu, have disagreed with the state government over the governor’s performance.
While the state government, according to Mr James Eze, has performed in all sectors and transformed the state, the PDP said Anambra State deserved better than what it has got from the All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA – led government.
Okonkwo, who is aspiring to govern the state, in an interview said it is pertinent to ask the pointed question- how far has Anambra State come?. According to him, the state capital is arguably a good indicator of the developmental strides that a state makes.
He said: “29-plus years since the creation of Anambra State, very little exists in the state capital Awka by way of critical public infrastructure as many key government institutions continue to operate from the same makeshift structures. One can only visit other state capitals around the country, many of which were created several years after Anambra State, to better appreciate the very poor physical condition of our state capital, Awka with respect to basic infrastructure. A state that prides itself as the Light of the Nation should do much better.
“Roughly 10 years ago, Anambra was widely acclaimed as having the best intra-state network of roads in the country. Today, very sadly, most of those roads have fallen into major disrepair due to abandonment and poor maintenance culture. Good roads, functional public hospitals, pipe-born water, regular power supply, good public transportation, among others are just the basics any serious government should help provide for its people. Today, very tragically, our people have been so dehumanized by decades of poor governance that we now settle for crumbs from our governments.”
Also, The Anambra State PDP Chairman, Nwobu, said the ineptitude of the APGA government has made it imperative for PDP to work hard and take over the Government House, Awka, adding that the people cannot afford another years of APGA in the state.
Responding, James Eze reeled out the governor’s achievements, and said Obiano is etching indelible footprints in healthcare; industrialisation; opening up the state through roads; provision of infrastructure and investment in electricity; and fighting the menace of gully erosion.
On healthcare, he said the Obiano got accreditations for the College of Medicine of Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University, Igbariam, and School of Health Technology, Obosi. He also boosted primary healthcare delivery through the Anambra State Primary Healthcare Development Agency, ASPHDA; got health insurance for Anambra people via Anambra State Health Insurance Agency, ASHIA; built Immaculate Heart Multi-Purpose specialist hospital, Aguleri and ensured adequate response to the COVID-19 pandemic in the state.
Arguing that Obiano had also focussed on roads and bridges right from when he was sworn in because he ”knew that roads and bridges were highly important to Ndi Anambra. To a people for whom life is a constant motion; the road is a fitting metaphor for existence.”
In pursuit of a vision to build roads and bridges that would have visible economic values, he said: ”Governor Obiano has completed 15 bridges across the three senatorial zones of Anambra State. They include the three flyovers in Awka and Amawbia and other bridges like the Nengo River Bridge, the Iyiora Bridge, the Ebenebe-Amansea-Ugbene-Ugbenu Bridge, the Umueje Oil Rig Bridge as well as the Kisa River Bridge in Umunya, the SARS Awkuzu Abube-Nando Bridge, Ndiukwuenu-Awa-Ufuma bridges (they are three), the Ezira-Umuomaku-Enugu Umuonyia Bridge and the Section 2 Mmiata Anam-Nzam Bridge. All these bridges have become outstanding legacies of the Obiano administration. However the 280 meters-long Aguleri Uno Aguleri-Otu bridge that leads to the oilfields of Anambra State stands out as the longest bridge in South East Nigeria and a monument to an administration that is committed to making Anambra State fulfil its enormous potentials. No previous administration ever paid this much attention to the importance of linking up diverse communities split apart by nature with modern bridges.’
”The Obiano administration has awarded a total of 53 Roads in Anambra South and completed 11 of them. Some of the roads awarded and completed by the administration in Anambra South include the Oye Utu-Akwuata-Court Road in Nnewi South, the Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University Road Uli in Ihiala and the Ebenato Udene-Amichi Road.
In Anambra Central, the administration awarded a total of 76 roads and completed 20 of them. Some of the roads completed in Anambra Central Senatorial Zone include the Commonwealth Road-Anyaoku Street-Mbidebe Enweozor Street-Afor Adike market Road Obosi, the Agbaja Abatete-Oraukwu/Alor Junction Road and the Ebube Muo Nso-Blessed Iwene Tansi Parish Road, Umudioka as well as the Eke-Uke Market-Uke Maternity Road.
”In Anambra North Senatorial Zone, the administration awarded 89 roads. The figure was pushed up by the multiplicity of internal roads in the Anambra International Airport Umueri. However, out of this figure, the Obiano administration has completed 26 roads in the zone. Some important roads awarded and completed in Anambra North by the administration are; the Awkuzu SARS-Abube Nando Square Road, Ose Okwuodu Market Road, Onitsha, the Nengo River Road and the Umueze-Igboezunu-Adani Road in Anambra East.’
”But perhaps what is even most fascinating about the aggressive construction of roads and bridges in Anambra by the Obiano administration is the little surprise for opposition elements who have always argued that Governor Obiano had abandoned all road projects he inherited from his predecessor. The records from the Ministry of Works show that out of the 97 roads Governor Obiano inherited when he took over, he has actually completed 54 of them while the rest are still undergoing construction. Some key roads that Obiano inherited from his predecessor and faithfully completed in fulfilment of the continuity mandate include; the Ekwulobia-Ezinifite Road, Ndiokwu-Amikpa-Oki Umuchu Road, Nsogwu Umunze Road, Igboukuwu-Ekwulumili Road by Grand Star, the Justice Nwazota, Oraifite, St Theresa’s Road, St Peter’s Nnewichi, Oguonu Road, Ozubulu, the Oye Neni-Adazi nnukwu-Akwaeze Igboukwu Road and finally the Umunamehi Road in Ihiala among many others.”