Has change come or about to come to Anambra State?
First, I would like to sincerely congratulate the new Executive Governor of Anambra State His Excellency, Willie Obiano and members of his cabinet. Congratulations and welcome to the hot seat your Excellency.
As many people may remember, being APGA to the core, I had serious concerns about our new Governor’s candidacy and did not hesitate to express those concerns as vociferously as I could. Until we heard about his nomination, many people including me had never heard about him within Anambra political circle or APGA. Being one of the most difficult states to lead, I feared that we were about to lose the mandate of the people of Anambra and return to PDP mafia days when even sitting Governors could no be guaranteed their safety and the ordinary man was trampled and preyed upon by some thugs who became famous for stealing from us; the death of the Igwes and other unsolved crimes on my mind.
I had cold chills because I could not see how anyone was likely to vote for someone they had never heard about. I also worried about the motive of the two APGA elephants who for the sake of prudence I will call Shady Saint and toxic chameleon and the likely consequences of their long drawn battle for the heart and soul of APGA. I fearfully wanted to block this new kid on Anambra State perilous political block. The virulent master rigging skills of the PDP weighed very heavily on my mind. Thankfully I had no say in the matter and the new Kid who is now looking like a real Iroko resisted the heat and made it. I also had to retreat and relent after one or two people who know him personally remonstrated with assurances that he is the right man. I had no choice than to take the back seat and watch though not without still wondering what the Saint and Chameleon had up their sleeves.
Alas! My fears were unfounded. My friends were indeed right because he seems to be ready to bring a new spirit of trust, partnership and friendship to our badly bedeviled State. The feedback is good. Anambarians seem to have confidence in this brand new outsider and may not regret giving him their mandate. They possibly knew and saw something which I did not know or could not see from my quiet world. Since it is only honourable to tell the truth and there is no permanent political enemy, I am now eating the humble pie, watching and urging everyone to throw their weight behind him. He deserves our support to deliver on our expectations.
Since his swearing in, I have been monitoring and following progress and the feedback sounds great leading me to wonder whether change has come or about to come to Anambra State.
I hear that unlike his predecessor who in my view had a phobia for intelligent and experienced people who know better than him and has a tendency to only associate with people who have made their names or their parents made names for, he is a real technocrat who has the best interest of Anambarians at heart. He is reaching out to as many Anambarians at home and Diaspora as possible regardless of how big or small they are. He appears ready and determined to change the face of leadership in Anambra state from that of cunning non-performing exclusive but loud self-praising and singing club to a truly democratic all inclusive one where everyone will be heard.
I am informed that two respectable people I know one of whom is an eminent and very highly respected USA based professor who has made his mark in education are in his cabinet. Reaching out to them and opening doors in my view, is a demonstration of confidence and true leadership abilities which gives me hope for the future of education in Anambra State. He is thinking of our state not himself and the gains of democracy in Nigeria. I also hear that his Deputy lived in Diaspora. So the Nigeria Diaspora is fully represented. Those representing us must perform and give other leaders the confidence to invite more of our people home.
His strides to date are laudable. I am hoping that the Saint and Chameleon will move on and let him spread his net to capture more of our youth, women and long-time unemployed graduates. This will make his cabinet fully representative of the people that make up Anambra and who may have a lot to offer us in terms of development and good leadership.
Many people without good cause most times critics, blame and condemn Nigerian youths for the high rate of crimes in Nigeria. Whilst I will not attempt to totally deny that like many adults, some of our youths have allowed themselves to engage in many wrong things, they are not all criminals or the cause of our troubles. Many of them are rather victims of the injustices of decades of reckless leadership which has rocked and continue to rock and remain the bane of democracy in Nigeria. They need realistic support, assurances and encouragement and not intimidation, unjustified castigation, inherited prejudices and emasculation which render them vulnerable to crimes, unforgivable abuse and unlawful exposition to death and sufferings by some criminal political elements in Nigeria. Our youth need the partnership of responsible governments which may be in the form of training for skills acquisition backed by government. They need mentoring by genuine business people and employers and funding for those who want to go into business and have realistic projects which will not be only beneficial to them but to many other youths and the country.
I believe that once this government can show true interest in providing real opportunities for our despondent youths, women, long time unemployed graduates and skilled people, there will be new optimism and unprecedented willingness to support and partner with government for the greater good of the people and our states. This will not only restore trust and confidence in democratic leadership in Nigeria but also ignite the interest of investors whose involvement will create additional opportunities for our state and all of us.
I will continue to watch and urge every Anambarian to be open-minded and from this moment on do their bit to move our state forward. We cannot be the light of the nation and live in darkness.
I truly thank God that a few dangerous looking men who reared their greedy heads expressing interest in the hot seat before the election lost. I was particularly worried about one of them as I feared that if he got his hands on our state, we will be finished and may never recover.
Some people may remember that I said that I will not address any Nigerian leader as His/Her Excellency or Rt. Honourable as many of them had let me down and I cannot justify helping them to continue to live in delusion. Well given this development, I have reconsidered that decision and addressed our new Governor as His Excellency. I hope that he will keep that title forever to our collective admiration as Ndi Anambra and Nigerians and be a shinning example to follow by others seeking their titles back.
I wish His Excellency and members of his cabinet the very best and hope that he will get rid of Kidnappers, armed robbers and 419ners so that Anambarians can begin to feel safe in their states again. Many intelligent ready to work Nigerians are trapped abroad including Abuja, Lagos etc because of fear of inadequate security. We need their time, money and effort to move forward and a lot will be achieved if we can make our state safe.