INSIGHT

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VOLUME 03, NOV. 2015

INSIGHT

...Thoughts and analyses that propagate progress

Governor Obiano Shines At

Nigerian Economic Summit

INSIDE:

LEAD STORY

Page 2-3: Governor Obiano Shines at Nigerian Economic Summit

Page 4: Mrs Obiano’s Café receives Motorcycles & Gas cookers - Emeka Ozumba

Page 5: Rose Obi: The Exemplary Teacher- Lovelyn Chinwe

Page 6-7: Willie Obiano: Giving Governance a Human Face in Nigeria - James Eze

Page 8: “Half of A Yellow Sun” by Chimamanda N. Adiche Named ‘Best of the Best’ of The Baileys Prize

Page 9: Governor Obiano Commissions Reconstructed Orumba General Hospital

Page 10-11: Miss Chidinma Okeke Wins Miss Anambra 2015 Beauty Pageant

Page 12-14: 10 Reasons Why Obiano’s Popularity Con nues To Soar - James Eze

Page 15: Ndi Anambra Congratulate Governor Obiano & Wife on 27 Years Marriage Anniversary

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OBIANO

SHINES AT

ECONOMIC SUMMIT


Governor Obiano won the

audience over with a

masterful account of his

strategic approach to

governance, showing a

clearly defined model of

development that explores

the human and material

endowments of the state in a

comprehensive, verifiable

and sustainable manner.


(L-R): Senator Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo State, Chief Willie Obiano of

Anambra State and Senator Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun State.

he governor of Anambra State, Chief Willie Obiano showed why he

Tis a leader to watch with a rive ng performance at the Governors

Session of the on-going Nigerian Economic Summit, drawing

intermi ent applause and posi ve comments from a cross sec on of the

audience who were unanimous in adjudging him the star performer of

the session.

Governor Obiano won the audience over with a masterful account of his

strategic approach to governance, showing a clearly defined model of

development that explores the human and material endowments of the

state in a comprehensive, verifiable and sustainable manner. The

governor's de applica on of private sector best prac ces that

emphasize the impera ves of clearly dis lled Vision and Mission

Statements in the achievement of group and organiza onal goals as well

as his exploits in securing the lives and property of Ndi Anambra stood

him out at the summit as a leader of note.

A thunderous applause resounded through the hall when governor

Obiano declared that Anambra was the safest state in Nigeria following

his administra on's crackdown on all manner of criminal elements in the

state in the past eighteen months.

The governor's narra ve of his exploits in Agriculture, investment drive,

educa on, infrastructural development and efforts at regional

integra on resonated with the audience who saw in his presenta on the

beginnings of a promising future for the people of Anambra State.

Obiano's performance became even more outstanding when contrasted

with the performance of some of his colleagues during the session whose

performance seemed out of sync with the expected mood of such a

serious economic gathering.

While his contemporaries exchanged mundame banters and poked fun at

2


each other in a manner that betrayed a lack of understanding of the seriousz nature of the event, Obiano spent the me allo ed

to him offering deep insights into the economic blueprint of his administra on and impressing prospec ve investors with his

brilliant understanding of how a carefully thought out partnership between the government and the private sector can work for

the general good of society.

Prominent private sector figures who a ended the session were unanimous in their observa on that governor Obiano has

successfully transferred some best private sector philosophies of governance to the public sector, leaving some remarkable

footprints and a trail of excellence.

(L-R): Chief Willie Obiano, governor of Anambra State, Frank Aigbogun,he moderator, Senator Ibikunle Amosun,

governor of Ogun State and Rauf Aregbesola, governor of Osun State at the Summit.

Chief Willie Obiano, governor of Anambra State and Abdulfata

Ahmed, governor of Kwara State.

Chief Willie Obiano and Dr. Mrs Obiageli Ezekwesili

(L-R):Chief Willie Obiano, governor of Anambra State, Dr Mrs

Obiageli Ezekwesili, former Minister of Educa on and Mallan Nasir

El Rufai,governor of Kaduna State at the Summit

3

(L-R) Senator Abiola Ajimbo, governor of Oyo State, Chief Willie

Obiano, governor of Anambra State and Frank Aigbogun, the

moderator, during the Governors Session at the

Nigerian EconomicSummit.


MRS. OBIANO'S CAFE

RECEIVES MOTORCYCLES

AND GAS COOKERS

Emeka Ozumba

The call on Ndi Anambra to support the selfless service

and programmes of the wife of the Anambra State

Governor, Chief Mrs. EbelechukwuObiano through

her NGO, Caring Family Enhancement Ini a ve (CAFE) is fast

yielding results with the dona on of 20 motorcycles and 20

gas cookers by a Philanthropist and Managing Director of

Tona Geological Services, Chief Dr. Tony Anukwu in support

of the pet project. The motorcycles and gas cookers were

recently presented to CAFE at the Governor's Lodge

Amawbia.

Receiving the items, Wife of the Governor of Anambra State,

Chief Mrs. Obiano expressed apprecia on to Chief Anukwu

and his wife for their con nuous support and iden fica on

with CAFE. The obviously impressed governor's wife stated,

" I am impressed with what is happening here today. It is a

confirma on that God loves Anambra State. This further

confirms that my decision to register CAFE, an NGO that

caters for the whole of the family is not in vain. The fact that

philanthropists and our poeple are joining hands with us is a

thing of joy that should be commended."

Chief Mrs. Obiano recalled that although " I have been doing

selfless work before I became the Wife of the Governor,I

some mes get worried at the enormity of the task but I also

believe that we have prominent sons and daughters of

Anambra who are their brothers keepers like the Managing

Director of Tona Geological Services, Mr Tony Anukwu and

his amiable wife. I thank them for their kind gesture."

The wife of the Governor urged other philanthropists to

emulate Chief Dr. Anukwu and join hands with CAFE to

empower indigent women and widows and others in need to

make the state be er for all.

Speaking on their mo va ons for the dona on, Chief Dr.

Anukwu said they have followed closely the empowerment

programme of the Wife of the Governor and decided to

support her. "We are here to iden fy with the wife of the

governor for her con nuous care for the less privileged and

the indigent in support of the work of the governor. We have

been monitoring CAFE programmes right from Lagos where

she lived before joining her husband in the service of our

people. My family and friends will con nue to support

CAFE." He stated

Chief Dr. Anukwu also disclosed that a good friend, Mr.

Charles a er hearing what he is doing has pledged to donate

generously to CAFE to enable the NGO empower many

others in Anambra State. He urged others to emulate their

gesture by contribu ng to the upkeep of the less privileged

and partnering with CAFE.

(L-R): Hon Commissioner of Works, Barrister Law Chinwuba, Speaker Anambra

State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon Barrister Rita Maduagwu, MD Tona

Geological Services, Chief Dr. Tony Anukwu, shaking hands with Wife of the

Governor of Anambra State, Chief (Mrs.) Ebelechukwu Obiano, Mrs. Franca

Anukwu, and Deputy Woman Leader APGA, Mrs. Njideka Onyejeka at the

presenta on 20 motorcycles and 20 Gas Cookers to CAFE at Governor's Lodge

Amawbia recently….

Excited wife of the Governor of Anambra State, Chief (Mrs.)

Ebelechukwu Obiano, inspec ng the 20 motorcycles and 20 Gas

Cookers donated to CAFE at Governor's Lodge Amawbia recently.

4


ROSE OBI: THE EXEMPLARY TEACHER

By Lovelyn Chinwe

he emergence of Mrs. Rose Obi Nkemdilim as the

TMal na Teacher of the Year is heartwarming and highly

commendable. The 37-year-old teacher of chemistry

and mathema cs at the Federal Government Girls College,

Onitsha, Anambra State, appears to be not only dedicated to

her profession but also believes that teaching is a sure way of

building a progressive na on.

In her words: teaching is a noble profession, it is a calling, it is a

commitment to building the na on”. The Society needs to

recognize and reward competent teachers whose passion for

educa on has helped to produce quality manpower for

Nigeria's economic growth.

Honouring her, the Nigeria Breweries PLC (which ins tuted the

award) gave her N1.5 million at the award ceremony hosted in

Lagos recently. She is also going to be given N5 million spread

across five years. Apart from that Mrs. Obi will be sent abroad

for further training while the Federal Government Girls

College, Onitsha- where she teaches- will get a fully furnished

block of six classrooms from NB Plc.

The first runner up Mrs. Binta Lawan Mohammed from Federal

Government College, Maiduguri, Borno State, got a cash award

of N1.5 million while the second runner up Daniel Sunday

Udiong from Akwa Ibom state got N1.25 million. In all, there

were 19 state champions and 16 of them (with the excep on of

the top three) went home with N500,000 each.

This laudable step taken by NB Plc to reward teachers is

par cularly significant because it emphasizes the valuable role

teachers play in na on building. And by ins tu ng a reward

system, the company made a telling gesture geared towards

mo va ng teachers to con nue to give out their best.

Professor Tijjani Abubakar, Dean, Faculty of Educa on,

Ahmadu Bello University Zaria: and Dr. (Mrs.) Fa ma Binta

Abdulrahman, Na onal President, All-Nigeria Confedera on of

Principals of Secondary Schools (ANCOPPS).

Calls for entries started in May, 2015 a er the entry forms were

adver sed in the media. Interested teachers were asked a set

of eligibility ques ons which included how long they have been

teaching as well as the subject and the classes they taught.

Sec on 2 required each applicant to write the strategic

approach in teaching students that impacted or improved their

performance in the last 12 months.' This should be wri en in

not more than 750 words. S ll in the same sec on, each

applying teacher was saddled with providing a case study with

the topic and background of strategy, innova ve and

instruc onal prac ces, challenges encountered and how they

went about resolving such challenges. Consultants were also

employed to wade through the entries and they ended up

shortlis ng 275 valid applicants from 32 states with the pass

mark set at 50 percent. The list was finally winnowed to 10

finalists who had to undergo a grueling interview session with

the panelists on October 2. This was where Mrs. Obi emerged

victorious.

I strongly believe that when teachers are highly mo vated,

they would perform be er. What NB Plc did will act as a fillip to

teachers who would be favourably disposed to discharging

their du es with a high sense of commitment, passion,

enthusiasm and happiness.

The corollary is that teachers would not lag behind in terms of

developing and nurturing their students to grow into powerful

na onal asses nt he future.

According to Kufre Ekanem, the NB Plc corporate Affairs

Adviser, the compe on which was focused on public

secondary schools would help to acknowledge teachers for

their significant roles in human capital development, while

inaugura ng the panel of judges for the award, he said:

Everywhere in the world, teachers play a vital role in training,

coaching and determining the quality of educa on, and this is

cri cal to sustainable na onal development. Our objec ve is

to create an avenue where excep onal teachers will be

showcased and rewarded annually and con nuously. By

selec ng six serious and reform-minded professionals who

know that the educa on system should be like to push the

na on forward, NB Plc leave li le room for anybody to doubt

the completeness of the panel.

The panel had Professor Pat Utomi as chairman and the

following as members: Professor (Mrs.) Mopelola Omoegun,

Faculty of Educa on, University of Lagos, Professor Thomas

Ofuya, Vice Chancellor, Wellspring University, Benin City; Mr.

Olusegun Adeniyi, chairman, This Day Editorial Board;

5

It will also be ital to call on other organiza ons, businesses;

federal and state governments to develop mechanisms

through which teachers will be con nuously provided with

enough incen ves to enable them remain steadfast in their

calling. It stands to reason that without adequate mo va on,

teachers will struggle to perform well. And if that is allowed to

con nue unhindered, Nigeria will definitely grapple with

building a func onal educa onal system which is sensi ve to

globaliza on and societal needs.

Rose Obi receiving her Mal na Teacher of the

Year award.


Willie Obiano:

Giving Governance

a Human Face in

Nigeria

Truth be told; we have seen state pardons of convicts

before. But we have not heard of prisoners given

amnesty in one hand and N1m in another, to help

them repossess their lives. And that is exactly what

“Governor Willie Obiano has done.


By James Eze (eziokwubundu@gmail.com)

here are poli cal leaders whose ac ons and speeches

Tlend new depths to our democra c experience; whose

body language raises the expecta on of the people.

These are leaders who have since accepted the wisdom in the

saying by Mahatma Gandhi, leader of Indian independence

movement, that “the best way to find yourself is to lose

yourself in the service of others.” Since he took the oath of

office to lead Anambra State on March 17 last year, Chief Willie

Obiano has worked his way to this small tribe of leaders; the

merchants of hope.

Now, anyone who watched the joyous tears of some of the 25

th

prisoners he granted amnesty to mark Nigeria's 55

Independence anniversary on television the other day would

not consider this ar cle another praise song. Truth be told; we

have seen state pardons of convicts before. But we have not

heard of prisoners given amnesty in one hand and N1m in

another, to help them repossess their lives. And that is exactly

what Governor Willie Obiano has done. One of the prisoners

who could muster enough self-possession to express himself,

was full of praises to the governor for giving him a chance to

live again. Others were so astounded they lost use of their

tongues.

Earlier in an address to mark the Independence Anniversary,

Governor Obiano had mounted a compelling rhetoric on hope;

arguing that Nigeria is bigger than all her challenges and that

he had no doubt that the sun would rise on Nigeria someday

soon. “Although the price of oil is s ll down in the

interna onal market, our hopes shall not fall. Though

insurgents and violent criminals s ll prowl the land, our

dreams shall never die. Although we may not always agree

with each other, the basis of our union shall withstand the test

of unity,” he had declared to a rousing applause at the Alex

Ekwueme Square. He had also explained that it was along with

this new vista of hope that he had decided to give hope to

some Nigerians who needed it most by exercising his

preroga ve of mercy in gran ng amnesty to the 25 prisoners.

The only convict who could muster enough composure to talk

simply blurted, “My heart is full of joy. I cannot express it. Only

God knows how I feel.” In his fragmented speech, it was

evident that he was glad to have his life back again. And that is

what leadership at its best should do; give life back to the

people. It is not enough to preach hope. It is more profound to

GIVE hope and Willie Obiano has amply demonstrated this

with that unprecedented gesture.

Interes ngly, the independence anniversary gesture is just one

of several li le acts of kindness that have con nued to

humanize the face of Willie Obiano's leadership in Anambra

State. A few weeks earlier, Governor Obiano had touched lives

differently. He had invited the widows and survivors of the

twelve men who were slain by Boko Haram in Mubi, Taraba

State in January last year and handed scholarships to their

children. These were people who had been forgo en since

that dastardly act that plunged the whole of Adazi Nnukwu and

the en re state into mourning. But Obiano has given the

children of these innocent vic ms a second chance. He also

6



Interes ngly, the independence

anniversary gesture is just one of

several li le acts of kindness

that have con nued to humanize

the face of Willie Obiano's

leadership in Anambra State. A

few weeks earlier, Governor

Obiano had touched lives

differently. He had invited the

widows and survivors of the

twelve men who were slain by

Boko Haram in Mubi, Taraba

State in January last year and


handed scholarships to their

children.

gave the same chance to the children of Engr. Chike Okoli, a

former Commissioner for Science and Technology in the state

who was slain by kidnappers. But even before all these,

Governor Obiano had made educa on free to all physically

challenged children in the state; ensuring that no Anambra

child is denied a chance to find fulfilment through learning by

the fact of their physical disability.

While it may not be clear whether Governor Obiano has

integrated Bob Kerry's view that “unexpected kindness is the

most powerful, least costly, and most underrated agent of

human change,” into his philosophy of leadership, it is

important to recall that in March this year the governor had

generously donated his salaries to charity. Long before

President Buhari and Vice President Osibanjo had accepted a

slash in their salaries in response to the economic difficul es

in the country, Obiano had directed his Principal Secretary,

Mr Willie Nwokoye, to ensure that all his salaries as the

governor of Anambra State were spent in giving meaning to

the lives of underprivileged people in the state. The beauty of

that par cular gesture is that it was done without fanfare,

without the figura ve trumpet blast that is typical of Nigerian

public giving.

But to anyone with discernment, it is not difficult to link

Obiano's dona on of his salaries to the underprivileged to his

humane increase of workers' salaries at a me when the

prevalent economic downturn in the country had given other

governors a perfect alibi to dispossess their people. They

both sprang from the same well. Inside Governor Obiano's

heart lies a fountain of kindness; a pool of compassion or

perhaps a small voice that echoes Delai Lama's famous

declara on; “my philosophy is kindness.”

This may well be part of the reason why Obiano had set up a

home for the rehabilita on of the mentally unhinged people

in Nteje, Oyi Local Government Area of the state. This facility

picks up people with a mental illness from the streets for

rehabilita on and eventual re-union with their families. The

inmates of the home are treated un l they come out of their

mental state. Then a rigorous process of rehabilita on and

re-orienta on ensues, a er which they are re-united with

their families. The story is o en told of a former inmate from

Edo State who has become a source of inspira on to other

inmates. Obiano demonstrated a commendable presence of

mind and a remarkable compassion in se ng up this facility.

He has once said that he is not just the governor of the rich

and the famous or the strong and mighty but also of the poor

and the wretched and the weak and the vulnerable.

Obiano's direct personal involvements in the rescue of

accident vic ms as witnessed in Upper Iweka, opposite Army

Barracks last year and his award of scholarships to the three

children of Ikechukwu Odinigwe who was crushed to death

along with his wife and first son by a truck driver in Awka last

August, all bear tes mony to his being the governor of the

weak and the vulnerable. So does his prompt clearance of 8-

year old N1.9bn arrears of salaries owed Water Corpora on

staff as well as the N950m arrears of pensions and gratui es

owed local government workers in the state.

Indeed, long before he became the governor of Anambra

State, anyone who came in close contact with Willie Obiano

never failed to leave with one impression – that he is a happy

man. In almost everything he does, Obiano never misses the

chance to connect with the people; to understand their pains

and lend a mely hand. Edith Wharton, Pulitzer-winning

American novelist once said that “there are two ways of

spreading light: to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it.”

It is indeed refreshing to see how, over the years Chief Willie

Obiano has wi ngly or unwi ngly become both the candle

and the mirror that reflects it.

7


“HALF OF A YELLOW SUN”

BY CHIMAMANDA

NGOZI ADICHIE -

NAMED 'BEST OF THE BEST'

OF THE BAILEYS PRIZE.

Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie has

been named 'Best of the Best' of the winners of the

second decade of the Baileys Women's Prize for

Fic on. The announcement was made on Monday this week

nd

(November 2 ), at the Piccadilly Theatre in London. The 'Best

of the Best' was chosen from the ten novels that have won the

prize in the past decade. The chairs of the judging panels read

from each of the ten prize-winning novels before the 'Best of

the Best' announcement.

Adichie commented; “I have a lot of respect for the books that

have won in the past ten years and also for the books that have

been shortlisted – I feel I am in very good company. To be

selected as 'Best of the Best' of the past decade is such an

honour. I'm very grateful and very happy.”

Half of a Yellow Sun won the Bailey's Women's Prize in 2007

(when it was s ll known as the Orange Prize).

Syl Saller, Chief Marke ng Officer of Diageo, the Prize

sponsors, added, “It is a delight to shine a light on the women

who have shaped the literary landscape for the past decade.

Chimamanda is an excep onal talent and a truly worthy

winner of the Best of the Best accolade.” The announcement

marks the climax of celebra ons to mark twenty years of the

prize.

In a double win for Adichie, HALF OF A YELLOW SUN was also

the public's choice for the “Best of the Best” award in a vote

hosted on the BBC website.

The Baileys Women's Prize for Fic on is the world's most

pres gious annual book award for fic on wri en by a woman.

Established in 1996, it celebrates and promotes fic on by

women throughout the world to the widest range of readers

possible.

Muriel Gray, Chair of Judges, said: “While it's some mes

pompous to call a book 'important', it's appropriate to say it of

Half of a Yellow Sun. Chimamanda's achievement makes Half

of a Yellow Sun not just a worthy winner of this most special of

prizes, but a benchmark for excellence in fic on wri ng.”

8

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: Biography

Chimamanda Adichie is from Abba, in Njikoka L.G.A. of

Anambra State. She grew up in the university town of Nsukka,

where her father was the first Professor of Sta s cs in Nigeria,


and subsequently Deputy Vice Chancellor of the University

of Nigeria, Nsukka. Her mother -in another first- was the

first female Registrar of the University.

She excelled academically, ge ng the best JSS and SSS

results in the history of the University of Nigeria Secondary

School, and then going on to study Medicine and Pharmacy

at the University. Adichie had been wri ng since the age of

four, however, and wri ng is what she always felt was her

calling.

Fortunately, her parents were understanding of her

goals, and she le for the US at the age of 19 for further

studies, although this me in a different direc on: enrolling

in communica ons and poli cal science at Drexel

University, before transferring to Eastern Connec cut State

University.

She graduated summa cum laude (the equivalent of a First

Class degree). She subsequently took a Masters degree in

crea ve wri ng from Johns Hopkins University. A er

publishing her first two books, she followed up with

another Masters degree in African studies from Yale

University. She also subsequently was awarded fellowships

at Princeton University, where she taught Crea ve Wri ng,

and Harvard University. Adichie was also awarded a

MacArthur Founda on Fellowship - popularly known as the

MacArthur “Genius” award.

GOVERNOR OBIANO

COMMISSIONS RECONSTRUCTED

ORUMBA GENERAL HOSPITAL

Governor Obiano has on Thursday, November 5,

2015 commissioned the Re-engineered Orumba

G e n e ra l H o s p i ta l l o c a ted a t A j a l i . T h e

commissioning came just 6 months a er His Excellency

signed the Anambra Business Coali on Ini a ve MoU with

Rise Health Corpora on, USA.

The over 40 year old hospital facility which was in near

moribund state is now totally reconstructed, equipped

and ready for best health prac ces.

The Commissioner for Health, Dr Joe Akabuike had once

said on the web pla orm 'Anambra Scorecard', that Gov

Obiano is determined to turn around the health sector and

make the State a centre for Medical Tourism

Adichie's work has been translated into over thirty

languages. She is the author of the novels Purple Hibiscus,

which won the Commonwealth Writers' Prize and was

shortlisted for the Orange Prize for Fic on (now the Bailey's

Prize), and Half of a Yellow Sun, which won the Orange Prize

for Fic on and was a Na onal Book Cri cs Circle Award

Finalist and a New York Times Notable Book; and the story

collec on The Thing Around Your Neck.

Her latest novel Americanah, was published around the

world in 2013, and has received numerous accolades,

including winning the Na onal Book Cri cs Circle Award for

Fic on; and being named one of The New York Times Ten

Best Books of the Year. A feature film based on Americanah

is being co-produced by Lupita Nyong'o and Brad Pi and

will star Lupita and David Oyelowo.

In addi on to her wri ng, Chimamanda has been invited to

speak at many occasions around the world, with two of the

most notable being TED Talks. The first, delivered in 2009,

tled: “The Danger of A Single Story”- is now one of the Top

Ten most-viewed TED Talks of all me, with over five million

views. The second, tled “We Should All Be Feminists” has

started a worldwide conversa on about feminism,

especially a er it inspired a song by singer Beyonce.

His Excellency, Chief Willie Obiano at the commissioning. He is

flanked by Dr. Joe Akabuike (Commissioner for Health), Dr. Barr.

Uju Nwogu (Commissioner for Informa on, Culture & Tourism),

Chief Victor Oye (APGA Na onal Chairman) and Dr. Emeka Okeke

(MD of Rise Clinics)

Chimamanda is commi ed to assis ng aspiring young

writers, and as one of her commitments, she started an

annual Writers Workshop in Nigeria. In 2011, the Nigerian

Government, through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs,

awarded her the Global Ambassador Award.

9


Miss Chidinma

Okeke wins

Miss Anambra

2015

Beauty Pageant

L-R: Tyra Obiadi (1st runner up), Chidinma Okeke

(Miss Anambra 2015) and Amaka Amamchukwu (2nd runner up)

hidinma Okeke who represented Orumba North Local

CGovernment won the Miss Anambra pageant 2015 on

Friday night (October 30, 2015) at an event described

by many as the best pageant to have been organised in the

state. She took home the star prize of 1 million Naira, Kia Rio

car, free unlimited business class travel for her and her

chaperon to any city in Nigeria serviced by Air Peace, free 1

year medical care courtesy of Rise Clinics amongst other

prizes. Miss Tyra Obiadi who represented Njikoka Local

Government Area was 1st runner up while Amaka

Amamchukwu who represented Anaocha Local Government

was 2nd runner up. Obiwon, DJinee, Slow Dogg, 2 Can Talk and

other acts thrilled the capacity crowd with scin lla ng

performances ll 4am when the Queen was crowned. Miss

Nwando Okwuosa (Miss Nigeria 2003), the Crea ve Director

of the Miss Anambra pageant and head judge on the night said

this year's compe on was keenly contested as many

beau ful and intelligent girls entered. In the end, she said the

judges picked Miss Chidinma Okeke for her grace, poise,

elegance, beauty and intelligence. Other judges Omotu Celia

Bissong (MBGN 2003 and cast member of Desperate

Housewives Africa and Tinsel), Beat FM OAP Olisa Adibua and

Fashion Consultant Ifeanyi Okonkwo made up the judging

panel. Mr Uche Nworah, MD/CEO of the Anambra

Broadcas ng Service said the pageant was growing in stature

as reputable brands such as Kia Motors, Air Peace, Rockland

Real Estate, Rise Clincs, M-P Infrastructure Ltd, New Crystal

Communica ons Ltd, Let's Partner With You Ltd etc have

signed long term sponsorship deals with the organisa on and

hopes that other brands will come on board in the 2016

edi on. He thanked Ndi Anambra for turning out en masse to

witness the occasion promising that the 2016 edi on will

even be be er and bigger.

The Commissioner for Informa on, Culture & Tourism,

Dr. (Barr.) Uju Nwogu presen ng Miss Photogenic award

to Johnson Kosi Lilian who represented Awka North.

Uche Nworah (MD/CEO of ABS) and Miss Nwando Okwuosa

join the Kia Motors Team in presen ng

dummy key of Kia Rio to the Queen.

10


L-R: The Judges made up of Olisa Adibua, Omotu Celia Bissong,

Nwando Okwuosa and Ifeanyi Okonkwo.

L-R: Miss Independence Anambra 2014 and 2nd runner up

MBGN 2015, Chizoba Ejike, Nkechi Okafor (1st runner up, Miss

Independence Anambra 2014), Jennifer Abasili (2nd runner up,

Miss Independence Anambra 2014) and Abiola Jinadu (Project

Manager, Miss Anambra Beauty Pageant 2015).

L-R: Igwe Joe Odenigbo (MD of Atlas MFB LTD, Abuja) join

Sir Willie Nwokoye (Principal Secretary to the Governor) in

presen ng the cheque of 1Million Naira to the winner, Chidinma

Okeke while Nwando Okwuosa & Omot Bissong look on.

Dr Emeka Okeke (in white shirt), CEO of Rise Clinc presents a

dummy health cover cer ficate to the queen.

L-R: Toby Nwanede, Business Development Manager at Air Peace

Ltd, co-sponsors of Miss Anambra Pageant 2015 & Uche Nworah,

MD/CEO of ABS

Prof Kate Omenugha (Commissioner for Educa on) & her husband

11


10

REASONS WHY

OBIANO'S

POPULARITY

CONTINUES

TO SOAR

By James Eze (eziokwubundu@gmail.com)

These are not happy mes for opposi on poli cs in

Anambra State. Willie Obiano's sterling

performance has le them searching so hard but

not finding what to say. So, just the other day, they found

the wrong thing to say. They said that governor Obiano's

popularity had “crashed.”

Now, anyone who has been following events in Anambra

State would know that this is a poorly conceived lie. The

fact before us actually shows that Obiano has been

Nigeria's most popular governor in the past six months.

And here are Ten reasons why this is so!

1. Obiano took Nigeria by storm on October 1, this

year. In a symbolic gesture that was intended to

th

drive home the significance of Nigeria's 55

independence anniversary, Governor Obiano

granted amnesty to 25 prisoners in Anambra State

and announced the gi ing of N1m to each exconvict

to enable them get another chance in life.

Giving these Nigerians who have undergone a long

period of reforma on a second chance with a

substan al amount of money to enable them

integrate back into the society was a very brilliant

idea that drew a loud applause from far and near.

But extending this great gesture to these people in

such austere mes when some states cannot even

pay their workers actually shows Governor Willie

Obiano as a leader to look up to! And this is why

Willie is popular.

2. Most people who live in Anambra State are aware

that the state is sincerely the safest state in Nigeria

today. There have not been any stories of violent

armed robberies, car snatching at gunpoint, ritual

killings or high profile kidnappings in well over one

year. While some cri cs are quick to argue that

crime wave is generally low in the South East at the

moment, they forget to acknowledge that

Anambra had always carried the highest crime rate

in the region. But now, all across the state, people

go about their normal businesses without any fear

of violence of any kind. Of course there might be

12


occasional burglaries or minor irrita ons that

characterize any human society. But Anambra is

safe. And this can only make Willie popular!

3. In September this year, Obiano li ed the banner

of hope for Ndigbo in general when he convened a

highly successful Regional Conference on Security.

It was the first me anyone would pursue the idea

of cleansing Igbo land and Delta State of criminals.

The conference a racted the governors of Enugu,

Abia and Delta States while Ebonyi sent a

representa ve. It was the

sort of ini a ve that

Ndigbo had been hoping to

see from our leaders over

the years – a coming

together of sorts to rebuild

the South East. Obiano also

used the opportunity of

the conference to appeal

for greater co-opera on

across the region and then

made a strong case for the

e m e r g e n c e o f a n e w

economic block from the

region. All the governors,

the Inspector General of

Police and the top military

brass that a ended the

conference thought that it

was an idea whose me

had come. And this is why

Obiano's popularity has

come to stay!

4. A few weeks ago, Governor

Obiano also showed a

remarkable sensi vity to

an issue that had become a

major irrita on to the

region. Traders in the

en re South East were

groaning from a crushing

faceoff with the Nigerian

Customs Service. The traders had seen a serious

erosion of their income caused by the hard line

posture adopted by the men of the Nigerian

Customs Service and worried that if nothing was

done quickly, most businesses in the region would

be up in the smoke. But Obiano quickly waded in

and orchestrated a roundtable dialogue between

the leadership pf the South East Amalgamated

Traders Associa on and the Comptrollers of

Customs in the various divisions in the region. This

opened a veritable window for the establishment

of mutual understanding between the feuding

par es and saved many families from imminent

loss of their breadlines. Obiano demonstrated

concern at the right me and devoted his me and

energy to help traders in all the markets in Igbo

land. And this is why the traders adore him!

5. It is no longer in doubt that Willie Obiano is a

bridge builder. Unlike others before him who

forced a wedge between Anambra's illustrious

sons and daughters, Obiano is deeply connected

to Ndi Anambra irrespec ve of religion or

ideology. He has

friends amongst


Obiano took Nigeria by storm on

October 1, this year. In a symbolic

gesture that was intended to

drive home the significance of

th

Nigeria's 55 independence

anniversary, Governor Obiano

granted amnesty to 25 prisoners

in Anambra State and announced

the gi ing of N1m to each exconvict

to enable them get

another chance in life. Giving

these Nigerians who have

undergone a long period of

reforma on a second chance with

a substan al amount of money to

enable them integrate back into

the society was a very brilliant

idea that drew a loud applause

from far and near.


13

o p p o s i o n

poli cians and many

other people who

do not see life from

his own personal

p r i s m . A l l s t a t e

events are a ended

b y o p p o s i o n

figures from Senator

C h r i s N g i g e t o

S e n a t o r U c h e

Ekwunife and Stella

O d u a h . H e

r e c o g n i s e s t h a t

i d e o l o g i c a l

differences ought

not to count when

the issue at stake is

the well-being of

Anambra State. This

is the same a tude

he carries to the

church. Although he

i s a C a t h o l i c ,

Governor Obiano

has repeatedly gone

to worship in many

Anglican churches in

t h e s t a t e . H e

iden fies with the

Anglican Church in a manner that sets him apart

from some people who were governors before

him. He adopts the same a tude to other

religious groups in the state including the Moslem

Community which has repeatedly celebrated

Sallah in the Governor's Lodge since he took over

the reign of leadership. Dona ons to churches for

the funding of mission schools are equitably

distributed without a hint of discrimina on. In

fact, even the opposi on will admit that Obiano

has built enduring bridges across many troubled

channels. And this is why his popularity is far from


declining!

6. Some mes, the opposi on seeks to drown the

voice of reason with empty agita ons that sound

hollow even to their own ears. They ask what has

Obiano really done? They do this as if they don't

realise that a governor who has increased the

salary of workers by 15% at a me when most

states are scouring Abuja for bailouts should

actually be applauded. As if they want us to turn a

blind eye to the 25 speedboats he launched in

Ogbaru the other day to open more access to the

riverine communi es; as if we should all suffer

some memory loss and forget the bags of rice he

distributed to civil servants in the state and the

arrears of pensions owed local government

workers as well as the backlog of salaries owed

Water Corpora on workers. The opposi on would

be very happy if we all didn't remember these

things. But we do. And that is why Obiano remains

the man for the season!

7. Again, if the prayer of opposi on were to be

answered, we would all forget that Willie Obiano

reacted rather quickly to the plight of the children

of the 12 men from Adazi Nnukwu who were slain

by Boko Haram by offering them scholarships.

Neither would they be happy if we all recalled that

the three surviving children of Okechukwu

Odenigwe who lost his life in a ghastly auto

accident at Finotel Junc on, Awka had all been

given full scholarships by the governor. Obiano has

touched so many people in so many profound

ways that it would take the society losing its mind

to forget him. And this is why his popularity

pulsates with life!

8. In March this year, Willie Obiano woke up from

sleep and put a call through to his Principal

Secretary, Mr. Willie Nwokoye. He directed that

going forward, all his salaries should be devoted to

charity and that they should be crea vely

channelled to fund different programmes that

would make life easier for the underprivileged

members of the society. To give meaning to this

gesture, he promptly set up a home for the

mentally ill in Nteje, Oyi council area where metal

pa ents are rehabilitated and reintegrated into

the society. Three months a er Obiano had

dedicated his salaries to charity, President Buhari

and Vice President Osinbajo undertook to slash

their own salaries by half. And this is why Obiano

con nues to stand out!

9. Anambra indigenes who watched the live TV

coverage of the Governors' Session of the recent

Nigerian Economic Summit Group could not have

been prouder with the masterful performance of

14

governor Obiano in that session. The former

investment banker showed where he was coming

from when he seized the moment to sell Anambra

to the investment world. He came across as the

most serious of all the Southern governors at the

session; marshalling out his points, showing his

strategic approach to governance, playing up all

the compara ve advantages of his state and

assuring prospec ve investors that “Anambra is

the safest state in Nigeria.” Many people le the

hall talking about the Anambra governor. Obiano

is also highly respected by his fellow governors at

Federal Economic Council mee ngs where he

dissects economic issues with unmistakable

brilliance and aplomb. Willie Obiano is obviously a

man on a mission. And this is why his star

con nues to shine!

10. The tenth reason why Obiano's popularity will take

a long me to fall is that unlike most of his fellow

governors, Willie Obiano came into governance

fully armed with an economic roadmap. His Four

Pillars of Development is very cleverly cra ed

blueprint that accommodates every aspira on of

his administra on for Anambra State. It is a rare

demonstra on of competence in governance.

Again, Obiano's Vision and Mission Statements are

outstanding and realis c. In fact, many aspects of

Obiano's Vision statement are already fully

realised. Many governors in Nigeria do not have

any clearly stated vision or mission for being in

government. Recently, at the very well a ended

Stakeholders Interac ve Summit, Obiano gave a

compelling insight into the many achievements of

his administra on in a mere eighteen month

period and the le most of Anambra's preeminent

ci zens speechless. And because Ndi

Anambra are fully aware of all these, and because

Ndi Anambra cannot be led by the noose by people

whose only means of livelihood is to hurl

invec ves at innocent hard-working people on

Facebook, Obiano's popularity will con nue to

soar!

In September this year, Obiano li ed

the banner of hope for Ndigbo in

general when he convened a highly

successful Regional Conference on

Security. It was the first me anyone

would pursue the idea of cleansing

‘Igbo land and Delta State of criminals.


NDI ANAMBRA CONGRATULATE

GOVERNOR OBIANO, WIFE

ON 27 YEARS MARRIAGE ANNIVERSARY

The governor of Anambra State Chief Willie Obiano and

his wife, Chief (Mrs) Ebelechukwu who are marking 27

years anniversary of their marriage today, Thursday

October 29, 2015, woke to a deluge of congratulatory

messages from family, friends and well-wishers as well as Ndi

Anambra who have come to felicitate with the couple on the

new lease of life, renewed hope and the gradual

transforma on of the Anambra State landscape.

As at the me of this report, there was no indica on in Awka

that governor Obiano and his wife have any plan to

commemorate the anniversary in a special way. This is

because, the governor had already commenced his busy day

with the inspec on of various points where erosion is causing

havoc across the state, while the wife is busy mee ng with a

group of women with respect to the forth-coming

programmes of her NGO - Caring Family Enhancement

Ini a ve (CAFÉ).

The Obianos' business-like approach to the day has not

dissuaded those who felt there is need to felicitate with the

family on the special occasion and thank God for giving them

the grace to serve Anambra State. Amongst the early callers

was Chief Dr. Tony Anukwu, Okwanka Aguleri, who described

the marriage as the type ordained by God. According to Dr.

Anukwu, “Willie and his wife of 27 years have always lived a life

of philanthropy; they look out for their neighbours wherever

they are, especially the less privileged. That is why their house

has always been a kind of mecca of some sort for all. May God

bless them always, he prayed”

Also speaking on the significance of marriage anniversary, Rev.

Chuka Okoye, said that most marriages are not a bed of roses,

so when you see a couple achieving great heights together, we

should commend them to God's. protec on and care. It is

heart-warming to learn that Governor Obiano, “Willie is

Working,” and his wife, “Osodieme” have been married for 27

years and it is a good reason to thank God. My prayer is that

God may bless and keep them alive to fulfill their mission for

our people in Anambra.”

On his part, Mr. Emma Ezeani, described the Obianos as unique

couple who were bonded together by God to do charitable

things. “I encountered Willie before I got to know the wife.

Although a man of style, Willie remains a down-to-earth fellow

who takes his work seriously. When you combine his quali es

with that of his humane wife, Ebelechukwu, you will agree with

me that theirs is a partnership made in heaven. I wish them

happy wedding anniversary and God's protec on.

Numerous callers on the state radio, Anambra Broadcas ng

Service who learnt of the special day for the governor and his

wife have been sending messages of goodwill to the couple.

The marriage of the First Ci zen of the State which was

consummated in Lagos some 27 years ago is blessed with two

children – a daughter and son.

15

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