Commentary: Professor Soludo And A Greater Anambra

Commentary: Professor Soludo And A Greater Anambra

It is to the glory of God that the Anambra governorship election was held and concluded without bloodshed, turmoil, bickering and rancour. Suffice it to say, therefore, that the election was free, fair and credible; in fact, one of the most peaceful elections ever conducted in Nigeria. Hence, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), last Friday, issued Certificate of Return to the winners, Professor Chulwuma Soludo, the governor-elect and his deputy, Dr Onyekachukwu Ibezim.

Every onye Anambra should beat their chest and thank God that they are from Anambra. Ndi Anambra are resilient and honourable people; dogged but peace loving. They are blessed with enormous human and material resources, yet very humble. They are not selfish, arrogant, greed and egoistic. Ndi Anambra are altruistic and progressive in nature. Hence, almost all the co-contestants of Prof. Soludo and other major stakeholders across party divides, including President Muhammadu Buhari, have congratulated the winner.

That is the way to go. After all, in 2010, when Soludo first contested, two hours after the announcement of the results, he congratulated the winner then. That is the Anambra spirit, which ought to be sustained by all, at least, to save cost of litigation and to avoid distractions for speedy development.

Fortunately, it is worthy of note that Professor Soludo knows the enormous challenges facing him. He is abreast with the high expectations of Ndi Anambra, Nigeria and the world. No doubt, all eyes will be on Anambra from March 17, 2021, when Professor Soludo and his deputy will be sworn-in at the end of the eight-year two terms administration of Governor Willie Obiano.

Remarkably, Obiano has written his name on Gold in Anambra state. He has bequeathed a great legacy, which Ndi Anambra would like Soludo to surpass. Akpokuedike has done more with less and the world would like the in-coming governor to sustain and surpass the tempo, thank God Anambra is now an oil producing state.

The APGA government has shown that salaries and pensions can be paid on or before the 25th of every month, while democracy dividends can get to every nook and cranny of the state through Community Choose Your Project Initiative. Youths are now part and parcel of government through political appointments, which helped to reduce crime to the barest minimum in Anambra. It should be sustained so that the state will remain the safest.

Obiano has shown that a non-oil producing state can construct an international cargo and passenger airport. And now that oil status has changed, we should be thinking of a seaport. Roads are very basic to the rapid development of any clime. Akpokuedike has done noble, the rest is left for the incoming administration. Township, inter and intra city roads should be given priority. Ndi Anambra like good roads a lot.

In fact, all roads whose contracts had been awarded by the present and previous administrations should not be abandoned. Flyovers and street lights are there, but more will be needed, especially at Regina Caeli junction, water board by Ifite Awka, other parts of Awka, Onitsha, Nnewi, Aguata and Ekwulobia. Awka should be expanded by constructing roads that lead to hinterlands such as Ebenebe, Amansea, Isiagu, Isuaniocha/Achala/Mgbakwu. Let there be more link roads to check road congestion.

Obiano has shown that Agriculture, which was the mainstay of the economy of Ndigbo, can sustain a state such as Anambra, leading to export of some produce like onugbu, uju and the rest. Soludo should not look away from that sector. Again, Obiano is constructing a FIFA-standard stadium in Awka, other areas of sports should be looked into to tap the burden talents of our youths.

Housing program will equally be necessary to help check high rent in the state. Anambra has remained on top in education in Nigeria for many consecutive years now. Fortunately, the in-coming chief executive is an academic; therefore, the tempo is expected to be surpassed.

Though, expectations are high, but we are glad that Professor Chukwuma Soludo is equal to the task ahead. He is an embodiment of ideas, who has helped in building nations and organization. Already, he has pledged to sustain, uphold and even surpass the good governance in the state and adhere strictly to democratic principles.  May God help him.

WRITTEN DR. NNAMDI NWADIOGBU

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