By Izunna Okafor, Awka
In a spectacular display of political and civic engagement, the Anambra State Governor, Prof. Charles Chukwuma Soludo, has wowed the people of the State with the scorecard of his government’s achievements under 20 months in office.
The Governor presented the scorecard on Saturday at Nnewi, during the zonal rally of the Soludo Ambassadors — one of the support groups that not only begged him to contest for the Anambra State Governorship Election in 2021, but also supported his ambition, and has remained supportive to his administration since he assumed office in March 2022.
This reporter, Izunna Okafor, gathered that the rally held the same day the Senator representing the Anambra South Senatorial District, Senator Ifeanyi Ubah, was being officially received into the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Awka, having earlier announced his defection to the party from the Young People’s Party (YPP) a few weeks ago.
However, while Senator Ubah was being celebrated in Awka, Governor Soludo was in his hometown, Nnewi (the venue for the zonal rally) on a unique mission, as he presented his 20-month scorecard to the people of the Zone, while also seeking their continuous support to his governance.
Represented at well attended mega zonal rally by his Chief of Staff, Mr. Ernest Ezeajughi, Governor Soludo appreciated the organizers of the event, while also spotlighting the significant milestones of his government in various sectors of the State. He expounded on his government’s commencement of work in three key areas of security, infrastructural developments and cleanliness of the State —the foundational pillars of the state of emergency he declared the very day he assumed office.
According to him, while the State is calm now in terms of insecurity, road construction and infrastructural development works are currently ongoing in all the 21 local government areas of the State; while Okpoko, the hitherto largest swamp in Africa, has now been transformed into a regenerated city — a gesture, he said is also being replicated in different parts of the State at the moment.
While hinting that he does not really like blowing his trumpet but prefers the masses who hear, see and feel the impact to do so, Governor Soludo expressed gratitude for the unwavering support from the people and urged them to continue supporting the All Progressive Grand Alliance, APGA-led government. He further assured the crowd that more transformative initiatives were underway in the State.
“Indeed, we’re changing the gear of development in Anambra State,” the Governor confidently assured the people.
On his own part, the National Leader of the Soludo Ambassadors and Managing Director of the Awka Capital Territory Development Authority (ACTDA), Mr. Ossy Onuko, who said the aim of the rally was to enlighten the people of the zone on what the Governor is doing and the need to keep supporting him, took the stage to highlight the multifaceted impacts of Governor Soludo’s leadership in the State. He underscored the Governor’s commitment to youth empowerment, noting the recent empowerment of over 5000 youths with both skills and financial supports; as well as the recent and ongoing employments of thousands of teachers and health workers in the state, and the recent declaration of free education in primary schools and junior secondary classes of all public schools in the State.
While also drawing attention to over 400 kilometers of extensive road projects so far undertaken by Soludo’s administration, as well as the ongoing construction of Ekwulobia Flyover and the largest amusement park in the southeast; Onuko said beyond road infrastructure, the Governor’s vision also extended into diverse realms, as exemplified by the free distribution of a staggering 1.1 million coconut and palm seedlings —a strategic move towards the palm revolution and sustainable agricultural development in the State.
He further hinted on the Governor’s plan to initiate three new cities in Anambra, to be known as Awka 2.0, Nnewi 2.0. and Onitsha 2.0, adding that the government is also currently reviving the urban water schemes in the State. These initiatives, according to Onuko, collectively illustrate a forward-thinking approach of the Governor to the welfare of the people, transformative development, and general economic wellbeing of the State.
Earlier in his address of welcome, the Anambra South Zonal Coordinator of Soludo Ambassadors, Hon. Nnamso Nwafororizu said the Governor’s second tenure was not negotiable. He recalled that Anambra Central Senatorial District and Anambra North Senatorial District had taken their two tenures each in the leadership of the State, stressing on the need for Anambra South to take their own turn in full without interruption.
Contributing, the National Coordinator of the group, Mr. Nwachukwu Obiora Kenneth urged the people to keep supporting the Governor, whom, he said, had proved to understand the job he came to do in Anambra.
In their separate remarks, the State Chairman of APGA in Anambra, Chief Ifeatu Obi-Okoye (represented by the Nnewi North APGA Chairman, Hon. Tony Muodielu); the State’s Commissioner for Industry, Mr. Christian Ndubuisi; and the National Woman Leader of the Soludo Ambassadors, Hon. Vera Atuigwe, all attested to the good works of the APGA-led government in Anambra. These, they said, the Governor did towards actualizing his vision of making the state a livable and prosperous homeland, in keeping of his campaign to Ndị Anambra.
Although earlier represented at the event by Hon. Jude Osummuo, the Traditional Ruler of Nnewi and longest serving monarch in Africa, H.R.H. Igwe Kenneth Orizu thereafter, played host to the members of the Soludo Ambassadors who paid him a courtesy visit at his Palace, where he also commended the Governor and his team for their good works in the state, and also showered his royal blessings on them.
Other stakeholders who graced the occasion include the Transition Committee Chairman for Nnewi North Local Government Area, Engr. Chris Obiorah; the President General of Nnewi, Dr. Mmaduka Atueyi; Coordinators and other principal officers of the group at the different Senate zones and local government areas of Anambra State, including the Zonal Director, Contact and Mobilization, Anambra South, Hon. Ikechukwu umeanima; and the Local Government Coordinator for Nnewi South, Hon. Anselm D’Great.
Aside the installation of more patrons and patronesses of Soludo Ambassadors; the event also featured parades and processions by different groups, including members of the Soludo Ambassadors from the seven local government areas in Anambra South, who all dance-marched round, reinstating their solidarity with the Governor.
The participants at the event were also entertained and tickled by cultural performances and displays by various cultural groups, including the highly-revered Ajọ Ọfịa Nnewi masquerade, Mkpọkịtị Umunze dance troupe, Atụ Masquerade, and the Agụ Ehim Dance Group of Umunuko Ukpor Nnewi South, among others, each of whom took their turns to entertain and thrill the audience with their exceptional performances.