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Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Dr. Willie Obiano Sworn In As Anambra Governor

AWKA—Dr. Willie Obiano and Dr. Nkamakonam
Okeke were yesterday, sworn in as governor and
deputy governor of Anambra State respectively
with a pledge to tackle headlong the perennial
problems of power failure and insecurity which
they identified as the biggest constraints to the
full manifestation of the ingenuity for which
Anambra people were known.
Chief Judge on court order
This was even as the state Chief Judge, Justice
Peter Umeadi, denied ever flouting any court
order by swearing them into office.
However, the Special Adviser to the President on
Inter-Party Matters, Chief Ben Obihas announced
the appointment of former Governor Obi,  as the
honourary Adviser on Finance to President
Goodluck Jonathan and would soon become a
member of the Federal Executive Council, FEC.
Society’s enduring virtues of love, unity and
brotherhood were some of the central themes
that dominated the inaugural address of the
new Governor, Obiano after taking the oath of
office, in an elaborate ceremony in Awka, the
Anambra State capital.
Tackling challenges
At the colourful ceremony held at Dr. Alex
Ekwueme Square, Awka and attended by eminent
personalities from Anambra and beyond, Obiano
said that the realisation of his dreams for
Anambra State depends on how well these two
challenges were tackled.
He said: “The good news is that there is hope
for Anambra State. We shall aggressively
address the challenge of power supply with the
proposed citing of ultra-modern Independent
Power Plants, IPP, in the three industrial hubs in
the state, especially, in Onitsha, Nnewi and
Awka. When fully operational, these plants will
generate enough electricity to power the
entrepreneurial dreams of our people.”
On security
In the area of security, he said: “Anambra will
be different under my watch. Not only shall we
redraft the operational manual of the entire
security apparatchik to ensure a lightening-quick
response, we shall also re-orientate our people
to see that every citizen has a role to play in the
security of our communities.  The concept of
community policing or what is better known as
the Vigilante Groups, has worked well in
Anambra State.
“The next challenge however is to re-train, re-
equip and refocus them to meet the dynamics of
our time. Along the same line, we will
strengthen the police and other law enforcement
agencies in the state to enhance their efficiency
and response rate to distress calls.”
Clamour for capital city
Obiano also said that his government would
address the long clamour by Anambra people for
a capital city “that fully reflects the essence of
our people,” adding that Awka would be re-
designed and remodeled to meet the structural
and aesthetic requirements of a 21st Century city
that the people would be proud off.
Apart from these, he also said that his
government would faithfully implement the
master plans of Onitsha and Nnewi.
He listed other priorities of his government to
include aggressive mechanised agriculture, oil
and gas development, trade and commerce and
industrialisation.
Eulogises Dim Odumegwu Ojukwu
While paying a glowing tribute to the late APGA
leader and Ikemba Nnewi, Dim Chukwuemeka
Odumegwu Ojukwu for building a new political
ark for Ndigbo, Obiano also expressed gratitude
to the people of Anmabra for the overwhelming
support they gave to him during the last
gubernatorial poll.
President Jonathan, who was represented at the
occasion by his Adviser on inter party matters,
Chief Obi, said he had enjoyed the support of
the former governor and assured that “he
remains my honourary adviser on Finance.
“Sooner or later Peter Obi will be a member of
the Federal Executive Council,” the president
said.
Earlier in his valedictory speech, former governor
Obi had described the transition as historic
pointing out that since the creation of both old
and new Anambra State, “no governor has
handed over to anybody.”
Obi speaks
His words: “Chief Jim Nwobodo did not hand
over to Chief Christian Onoh (in the Second
Republic); Chukwuemeka Ezeife did not hand
over to Dr. Chinwoke Mbadinuju; Mbadinuju did
not hand over to Dr. Chris Ngige and Ngige was
not available the day I took my oath of office.’’
He also claimed that when he ‘’was sworn in,
Anambra did not have the Governor’s Office,
there was no Governor’s Lodge. When I was
sworn in, I came with my car but today as we
leave here after the new Governor has been
sworn in, he will move in a brand new
Governor’s car and he will move into a
Governor’s Lodge.
Anambra State has returned to the path of
peace and progress because when we started
the journey all of us knew what it was but today,
we can say we have a state.”
He denied entering into any pact with Obiano,
advising his successor to give priority attention
to the future of the youths in the state.
Roll call
The inauguration ceremony was attended by
eminent personalities including former Chief of
Army Staff, Gen. Azubuike Ihejirila, rtd,  Gov.
Theodore Orji of Abia State, Special Adviser to
the President on Inter-Party Affairs, Sen. Ben
Obi, GOC 82 Div, Major Gen. S. Yusuf, APGA
National Chairman, Chief Victor Umeh, Business
mogul, Prince Arthur Eze, Sir Emeka Offor, wives
of Delta and Cross River State Governors, Roli
Uduaghan and Obioma Imoke, Nigerian
Ambassador to Spain, Mrs. Bianca Ojukwu and
APC Chieftain, Chief Annie Okonkwo.
Meanwhile, the state Chief Judge, Justice
Umeadi, has denied ever flouting an alleged
court order restraining him from swearing in
Obiano as governor of the state.
In a statement signed on his behalf by the Chief
Registrar, N. D. Ezeani, yesterday, after the
swearing in ceremony, Justice Umeadi noted that
there was a suit seeking a mandatory injunction
to stop him from swearing in Obiano and Okeke
yesterday, but that the suit had not yet been
determined.
He noted that from the numerous legal
authorities listed in the publications, wondering
whether the plaintiff would still achieve the
purport of his reliefs if he continued with his
suit.
The suit
Dr. Chike Obidigbo had in a suit number FHC/
ABJ/CS/118/2014, asked the Federal High Court,
Abuja for an injunction restraining the swearing
in of Obiano and his deputy yesterday.
Joined in the suit were the factional Chairman of
APGA, Chief Maxi Okwu, APGA, INEC and Chief
Judge of Anambra State.
Umeadi, however, observed that he would obey
all orders of court on matters which come to his
notice, even as he would not evade service of
any court process.
He said he would equally allow access even
where it is to be served on him personally,
adding that even where he is absent and the
court process is received in his chambers, it
would certainly come to his notice and he would
abide by same.
Umeadi further said that there was nothing to
show that injunction was granted against him on
the matter as none was served on him, adding
that he was a nominal party in the said suit.
Chief Obiano, ex-banker and technocrat who won
the November 16, and run off election on
November 30, 2014 on the platform of the All
Progressive Grand Alliance, APGA, took over from
the immediate past governor, Mr. Peter Obi
whose two tenures of eights were been largely
described as successful
In a highly inspiring address titled, Expanding
the Frontiers of Excellence; Obiano who is the
fourth democratically elected governor of
Anambra State sought to rouse the
consciousness of Ndi Anambra by reminding
them of the Igbo industry and ingenuity when
he said: “A people who astonished the world
with their ingenuity and resourcefulness during
wartime can lend a weighty hand to efforts to re-
make our world in peace-time.”

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