Fashola Inspects Federal Projects In Anambra, Southeast

Fashola Inspects Federal Projects In Anambra, SoutheastAnambra State Governor, Willie Obiano, had called for a visible Federal Government presence in the Southeast geopolitical zone and Anambra state in particular, as the zone had clearly been distanced in the scheme of developmental projects especially in the area of road infrastructure.

The Governor said this when he received the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola at the Governor’s Lodge, Amawbia.

He stressed that any positive action taken by the federal government in the Southeast presently would go a long way in rekindling confidence and sense of belonging in them.

The Minister assured the Governor of the commitment of the present administration of President Muhammadu Buhari to stimulate the economy with infrastructural development and that the Southeast would get its fair share.

Mr Fashola had been in the Southeast for a week inspecting federal projects, especially the Second Niger Bridge project and the roads.

The Minister whose entourage comprised top officials of the Ministry, commended Governor Obiano for his intervention on some failed federal roads and assured him that modalities of reimbursement were being worked out.

He relayed to the Governor the realities on ground with respect to the ongoing projects and maintained that the ministry would support the state in achieving its developmental aims as the federal government was not in competition with any state government, rather it would help them in successfully completing all projects everywhere.

He said: “Our concern essentially is to come and see the state of the federal roads, especially those that connect the states in the Southeast themselves and also to states in other zone.

“I will like to thank you for the interventions that you have made on some of the federal government roads and as I briefed you before, the President is mindful of the contributions to the state and even your intelligence has kicked off the plan by the federal government this year to make a provision for a board to settle all the state obligations and also various debts owed to contractors.

“This is part of the strategy from the federal government and Mr President to use infrastructure to stimulate the economy.”

Three officials from the ministry also gave status updates on the various projects in the state but not without appreciating all the support they had received from the state government.

Governor Obiano, in his response then commended the renewed interest of the federal government in the federal infrastructure in the Southeast and stressed the need for federal presence as that would boost the confidence of the people in the present administration at the center.

“I am delighted more importantly that you addressed some of the key areas that are bothering us. I’m happy to hear from you that the federal government will start work on the Second Niger Bridge this year.

“Finally, what we are saying here is that we want federal government presence in the Southeast as a whole and in Anambra in particular.

“We have lacked this presence for a very long time and their presence here will clearly enkindle a sense of belonging and improve major activities in the area,” he said.

After the meeting, the inspection team from the Governor’s lodge moved to sites of inspection, first through the Enugu-Onitsha Expressway to the Second Niger Bridge.

The construction was in the early phase, although for two years the contracting firm had registered its presence at the site.

According to the Division Manager of the company, Mr. Hadi Bley, they were awaiting funding for the commencement of construction and the early phase was expected to be completed within eight months and then the main construction would begin. This might likely take 36 to 40 months.

The Minister promised that inspection would be constant until the bridge is completed.

Obiano Launches Smart Bikes Unit To Improve Anambra Security

Obiano Launches Smart Bikes Unit To Improve Anambra Security The Anambra state Governor, Willie Obiano, has launched a Motor Bikes Security Unit with 50 smart bikes to complement the already existing security operations of other special units in the state.

Along with the bikes, a set of fully kitted and well trained Police riders, were presented at the Governor’s Lodge, Amawbia.

The smart bikes possess communication gadgets to connect with other special security units in the state, such as the Sand bags, Metro, Marine and Smart Cars unit.

Presenting them to the Anambra state Commissioner of Police, Sam Okaula, Governor Obiano said the idea behind the initiative, is for them to be able to penetrate areas where vehicles may not be able to reach, as well as check snatching of items by criminals especially during this yuletide season.

“The bikes would be able to reach areas that vehicles cannot, and help check bags and phone snatching elements, the governor said.

He then charged the police to be professional in their operations and desist from taking bribe or extorting money from citizens, but rather do things differently.

The keys to the motorbikes were handed over to the Mr Okaula, who alongside the governor test ran them.

The police boss on the other hand assured the governor of the commitment of the command to continue to suppress insecurity and crime in the state.

Furthermore, following Obiano’s consistent appeal for more intervention in the state security, he used the opportunity to launch an Armored Personnel Carrier (APC), also donated to Anambra state Police Command by the Inspector General of Police, Mr Ibrahim Idris.

Recession: Obiano Suspends Minor Taxes In Anambra

Anambra, Obiano, Taxes, RecessionAnambra State Governor, Willie Obiano, has suspended payment of numerous minor taxes in the state, announcing that the directive will take immediate effect.

In a broadcast at the Governor’s Lodge in Amawbia, southeast Nigeria, he said the decision followed the announcement of the Federal Government that the nation’s economy had gone into recession.

The Governor noted that his administration was aware of the difficulty the economic crisis had posed to the people of the state.

Four Intervention Stimulus

He said the state government had come up with a “four-intervention stimulus package”, to ease the pain of recession and its impact on the people in the grassroots majorly.

Governor Obiano identified the first part of the four key areas of intervention as the “Tax Relief Programme” in which various minor taxes would be suspended.

The second is the “Special Intervention Programmes for Small and Medium Enterprises and Large Enterprises” where the state government, under the Anambra Small Business Agency (ASBA), would provide the agency with a minimum of three billion Naira to lend to SMEs and MSMEs at nine per cent interest rates across key sectors.

Under the third intervention, which is the “Social Intervention Programme”, the government would provide the sum of 3.6 billion Naira to fund the ongoing 20 million Naira “Choose-Your-Project Community Programme” in all the 179 communities in the state.

The last programme is the “Infrastructure Intervention for Job Creation” in which the government would fund the development of 500 hectares of land in all agrarian communities across the three senatorial zones for commercial agricultural purposes among other measures.

Governor Obiano believes that Anambra State has the manpower, the material resources and the willpower to turn the looming despair and suffering to hope and prosperity for its people.

GDP Contracted In second Quarter

Nigeria’s economic recession had become obvious few weeks ago, after a report by the National Bureau of Statistics showed that the Gross Domestic Product had contracted by 2.06% in the second quarter of 2016.

According to the report, the decline has caused the Naira to get weaker while lower oil prices dragged the oil sector down.

The output shrunk by 0.36 in the first quarter.

During the quarter, nominal GDP was 2.73% higher at 23.48 million Naira at basic prices.

Earlier on Tuesday, the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) retained all key indicators.

The CBN Governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele, read a communique, announcing decisions reached at its September meeting in the nation’s capital, Abuja.

The committee agreed to keep the Monetary Policy Rate at 14 percent, the Cash Reserve Ratio at 22.50 percent and the Liquidity Ratio at 30 percent.

General Abubakar Commends Obiano For Anambra Security

General Abdusalami Abubakar, Anambra, Willie ObianoFormer Head of State, General Abdusalami Abubakar (rtd), has commended the Anambra State Governor, Willie Obiano, for his commitment to the peace and security of the state.

General Abuabakar made the commendation on Friday during a courtesy visit on the Governor at the Governor’s Lodge in Amawbia in southeast Nigeria.

He observed that Anambra State, under the present administration had been rapidly transformed in terms of infrastructural development and security.

The former military President lauded the security agencies for their contribution in maintaining peace and order.

He also urged the citizens of the state to support Governor Obiano’s initiatives and rest assured of continued benefits.

The Governor, in his response expressed joy at the visit, describing his guest as a great man.

General Abuabakar was accompanied by former Governor of old Kaduna State, Abba Musa and former Governor of Enugu State, Okwesilieze Nwodo among others.

Anambra’s New Police Commissioner Aims To Strengthen Community Policing

Police, Militants, BakassiThe new Commissioner of Police in Anambra State, Mr Sam Okaula, has set the agenda of re-invigorating community policing in the state.

He stated this during the handover ceremony at the Anambra State Police Headquarters, Amawbia, Anambra State.

The new Police Commissioner vowed to fight crime to the end and ensure that the Anambra Police Command continues to be the best in the zone.

The former Commissioner of Police, Hosea-Hassan Karma, now Assistant Inspector General of Police in-charge of Zone 9, Umuahia, while acknowledging that the new CP is a thorough-bred officer, also commended the command’s officers as the best crop in the entire zone.

AIG Karma assured the new Commissioner of Police that he was inheriting a stabilised security structure made possible by the selfless commitment of the officers and men of the command as well as the support of the security-friendly State Governor, Willie Obiano.

He urged CP Okaula not to relent in consolidating on the feat.

Presenting the handover documents to the new Commissioner of Police, Mr Karma drew his attention to security flash points where he must consistently pay attention to.

Men of the Anambra State Police Command have expressed hope that the new CP would quickly facilitate the deployment of latest security techniques in the area of community policing as he promised.

Anambra Signs MoU On Housing Projects With Two Companies

Housing, Anambra, Willie ObianoThe Anambra State government has signed a Memorandum of Understanding on housing development with two investment companies, Rockland Development Institute and Lake Petroleum Limited.

Signing the agreement on Friday at the Governor’s Lodge, Amawbia, Governor Willie Obiano said that the move was to further make housing affordable to the people of the state.

He explained that the numerous housing projects which his administration is undertaking was to reverse the uncomplimentary trend where Anambra citizens who work or do businesses in the state live in neighboring states due to lack of affordable accommodation.

The Governor expressed hope that the projects would provide a desirable housing development model.

The Managing Director of Anambra State Investment Agency, Mr Joe Billy Ekwunife, remarked that the outstanding benefit of the project was the reclamation of lands threatened by erosion.

The Executive Director of Lake Petroleum Limited, Mr Valentine Mbaji, commended the Governor’s effort in the area of security which he said has continued to attract investors.

He gave the assurance that the project would provide the much needed urban renewal for Onitsha.

The Managing Director of Rockland Development Institute, Mr Obi Eneh, on his part, assured Governor Obiano of his company’s full commitment to delivering a world class housing project to the state.

The Rockland MoU total investment was put at $10.8 million for the development of 450 plots of land in a new town layout, Baron Estate Court in Awka, the state capital.

The Lake Petrol deal was put at $7.2 million for the development of a state-of-the-art estate on 60 standard plots to be called Divine Mercy Estate located in Onitsha, the Abia State commercial capital.

Anambra To Partner With Ministry of Tourism And Diaspora

Willie Obiano, Anambra State, ErosionThe Governor of Anambra state, Willie Obiano, has commended the visit of the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Foreign Affairs and Diaspora, Abike Dabiri-Erewa, on the proposed partnership with the state government in the area of Tourism and Diaspora.

Mrs. Dabiri-Erewa who paid a courtesy visit to the governor at the Governor’s Lodge, Amawbia, commended Governor Obiano for his bold achievements in just two years in office and particularly applauded his initiative for being the first state to create a full Ministry of Diaspora Affairs as well as appointing a female commissioner to man the ministry.

She noted that the governor’s interest in Diaspora matters and said, with the increased population of Anambra people in the Diaspora, there is the need to foster partnership between her office and that of the state government, which will attract investors from the Diaspora as well as boost tourism as the state has massive tourism potentials that need to be showcased.

Governor Obiano stated that his mission is to make Anambra a first choice investment destination with paying particular attention to Diaspora, Culture and Tourism.

He revealed that efforts in the development of agriculture and tourist sites in the state especially Ogbunike and Owerre Ezukala caves is a priority which when ultimately achieved will turn the state into a world tourist attraction.

SON Acting DG Decries Absence Of Agency At Ports

SON, Standards OrganizationThe Acting Director General of the Standards Organization of Nigeria, SON, Dr. Paul Angya, says the absence of the agency at the various ports in the country has destroyed the economy, made local industries unattractive and created a lot of unemployment among the youths.

Dr. Angya was speaking to journalists at the Governor’s Lodge in Amawbia, when he paid a visit to Anambra State Governor, Willie Obiano.

The visit was ahead of the one-day sensitization seminar organized by SON to enlighten the local population, SMEs, and big industrial holdings and manufacturers on the benefits of application of standards to their production processes and products.

He said that several representations have been made to the federal government through the supervising Ministry of Trade and Investment and through the National Assembly to ensure the return of SON to the ports.

This according to him would help curb the overwhelming importation of sub-standard products into the country.

He said that response has come from the National Assembly through a visitation to the agency’s facilities but hopes were thin on the possibility of immediate reversal of the decision by the federal government due to issues of bureaucracy.

Obiano To Sign Anambra Health Insurance Scheme

Willie Obiano-Anambra State-Health Insurance SchemeGovernor Willie Obiano has expressed readiness to sign the Anambra State’s Health Insurance Scheme.

The insurance scheme would ensure adequate health service delivery to the less privileged citizens and ensure that doctors received what was due to them in their life saving duties in the state.

The Governor gave a hint about the new scheme during the inauguration of the newly reconstituted 14-member board of the Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University Teaching Hospital, Amaku Awka held at the Governor’s Lodge in Amawbia.

He maintained that the strategic approach of his administration towards re-positioning and transforming the state’s health sector, especially the primary healthcare services and the general hospitals were yielding positive fruit.

Governor Obiano commended the outgoing board members led by Dr. Dozie Ikedife, whose tenure helped secure the institution’s accreditation that saw to the graduation of its first medical doctors.

To ensure proper service delivery to the people and due remuneration for the doctors, he announced that the state government would soon assent the Health Insurance Scheme.

In his remark, the Anambra State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Joe Akabuike, explained that the inauguration was to assist in charting more progressive cause for the teaching hospital.

The board has as its chairman, a Gynaecologist and traditional ruler of Ifitedunu, Igwe Emeka Ilouno, and as its Secretary, a Professor of Anastaciology with Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Professor Beatrice Umeh.

It has a four-year tenure which could be renewed if they are found to have performed creditably well. They have been charged by the Governor to transform Anambra State to a health tourism center and the number one health destination in Nigeria.

Igwe Ilouno, who assured the government and people of the state of their commitment to effective service, said that they would put in their best to achieve much more than the mandate given to them.

Obiano Moves To Forestall Fulani Herdsmen, Host Communities Clashes

May DayThe Anambra State Governor, Willie Obiano, has convened a joint meeting with representatives of the Hausa/Fulani community, traditional rulers of communities where major grazing activities take place and members of the Fulani/farmers Cattle Menace Committee.

This is to draw a road-map towards preventing violent clashes erupting in the state and to ensure the enforcement of the resolutions reached earlier between the Fulani/Farmers Cattle Menace Committee, which he set up in 2015.

Addressing the meeting at the Governor’s Lodge, Amawbia, Governor Obiano said that the meeting was in response to the increasing clashes between Fulani herdsmen and their host communities in several other states.

The Governor reminded everybody of the resolutions reached earlier with the Fulani/Farmers Cattle Menace Committee which included payment of full compensation by the Fulani community to communities for any crops or property destroyed by their cattle while the communities also would pay full compensation to the Fulani community if they attack and kill any cattle.

In a situation where lives were lost, full compensation for burial and other activities would apply while perpetrators would face the full wrath of the law.

He emphasized to the Hausa/Fulani community that on no account should herdsmen carry guns and sophisticated weapons, assuring them of their safety and protection at all times.

For clarity purposes, the Governor directed the Special Assistant to the Governor on Islamic/Hausa Fulani Affairs, Garuba Haruna, to interpret to the Fulani delegates in their known language.

The Chairman of Anambra State Vigilante Services, Mr. Ikechukwu Afuba also drew attention to the issue of identity cards to be made available to herdsmen.

The leader of the Hausa/Fulani community and the Southeast Chairman of the Fulani Herdsmen Association, Sadiq Gidado, commended the security in Anambra State which had helped them carry on with their businesses successfully.

He appealed to the government to support them in the area of logistics to help monitor activities of their people everywhere towards harmonious and peaceful co-existence.

The meeting also had in attendance the Deputy Governor and some of the state service commanders. The NDLEA Commander also called for peaceful co-existence.

Obiano Assures Igala Community Of Better Welfare

Willie Obiano-IgalaGovernor Wilie Obiano has assured the Igala speaking part of Anambra State in Anambra West Local Government Area of improved welfare.

The Governor said that his administration would treat the indigenes, who are otherwise known as Olumbanasaa, as people from special area, as pronounced on them by the Federal Government in 1976.

He made the declaration on Tuesday when a delegation of the Igala speaking communities of the state paid him a courtesy call at the Governor’s Lodge in Amawbia, where issues and challenges facing them in their communities were tabled before him.

According to the leader of the delegation and the traditional ruler of Olumbanasaa, Igwe Pius Ojemile, the Governor’s giant strides in the state since he assumed office were matchless.

Igwe Ojemile said that Governor Obiano had touched them in the area of health, especially during the outbreak of cholera in their area where he rallied round and stopped the scourge in a matter of days.

The monarch said that they needed the Governor’s intervention in the local government in the areas of transportation, health, agriculture and education.

In his response, Governor Obiano promised to put in place, infrastructural facilities that would aid them in the aforementioned areas.

He also disclosed the 11 kilometres road construction on-going at Mmiata-Anam to Nzam, to solve the unsavory experience of travellers and community members on that road.

The Governor emphasised his agricultural agenda, in which he promised to supply them with improved rice seedling through the Ministry of Agriculture, and to help prepare their lands for cultivation.

The delegation left feeling more satisfied than ever and assured Governor Obiano of their support and loyalty at all times.

The Igala in Anambra State comprises many towns and they are predominantly farmers and fishermen with their local government area having the largest oil deposit in the state in southeast Nigeria.

Six Anambra Traditional Rulers Receive Certificate Of Rulership

Traditional RulersSix communities in Anambra State are overwhelmed with joy as the state government has officially handed over to their traditional rulers their Certificates of Rulership.

Some of the communities are those whose leadership crumbled due to crisis, as well as those who are without rulers due to the demise of their traditional rulers.

Handing over the certificates to them at the Governor’s Lodge, Amawbia, Governor Willie Obiano, charged them to rule with honesty and compassion having scaled through the conditions enshrined in the law guiding the institution as provided by the Anambra State House of Assembly.

Governor Obiano also emphasized the need to maintain good relationship with community members, government, churches, and any other recognized institutions in their domain but most importantly treat non-indigenes living amongst them with affection.

He tasked them to represent the state well wherever they will find themselves.

The Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Matters, Mr Greg Obi, reminded them of the rigorous hurdles they passed through to get to their present status and so urged them to rule well as the government would not hesitate to withdraw the certificate from any of them who foments trouble.

Some of the subjects spoke of their expectations from their traditional rulers, while some of the traditional rulers also shared some of their plans for their communities.

The six communities are Amesi in Aguata Local Government Area, Amaetiti in Orumba North, Umumbo in Ayamelum, Adazi Nnukwu in Anaocha, Eziagulu Otu and Nsugbe both in Anambra East local government areas of the state.

The traditional rulers were accompanied by their families and community members who rolled out their drums in support of and solidarity to their monarchs.