Jonathan Appoints Peter Obi As Chairman Of SEC

Peter ObiPresident Goodluck Jonathan has appointed the former Governor of Anambra State, Mr Peter Obi, as the new Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Mr Obi’s appointment was announced on Monday.

According to the presidency, his appointment takes immediate effect.

He was the Governor of Anambra State for two terms, between 2006 and 2014.

President Jonathan also approved the confirmation of Mr Mounir Gwarzo as Director General of the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Mr Gwarzo, who has been acting as Director-General of the Commission, was appointed to the Board of the Securities and Exchange Commission as Executive Commissioner in January, 2013.

President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan also relieved the Executive Secretary/Chief Executive Officer of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), Dr. Femi Thomas, of his appointment with immediate effect and approved the appointment of Mr Olufemi Akingbade, as Acting Executive Secretary/Chief Executive Officer of the NHIS.

Mr Akingbade, who hails from Ekiti State and holds a Bachelors Degree in Computer Science as well as a Masters in Business Administration, was the General Manager, ICT in the NHIS until his new appointment.

Obiano Disburses 950 Million Naira To Clear Pension Arrears

Gov. willie obianoThe Anambra State Governor, Willile Obiano, has announced that pension and gratuity arrears payment should not be a celebrated event in the state any longer as every retired worker deserves his or her entitlements promptly.

The Governor announced this during the presentation of a cheque for over 940 Million Naira on Friday, July 4, to 600 Local Government pensioners for the clearance of back log of pension and gratuity arrears from January to June 2014.

The Local Government pensioners, made up of retired workers from the Local Government system and primary school teachers, gathered at the heliport section of the Governor’s Lodge, Amawbia, in a ceremony to receive their entitlement from the State Government.

According to the Governor who welcomed them, the payment would bring to over 40 billion Naira the amount the State Government has paid in pension and gratuity within the administration of the former Governor, Mr. Peter Obi and the present administration.

Giving assurance that payment of pension and gratuity would remain a top priority of his administration, he said that all payments must be as and when it is due since every data of pensioners had been collected.

Mr. Obiano, while restating the commitment of his administration to increasing salaries once the internally generated revenue of the state increases significantly, also urged workers to support Government in achieving set goals.

The Commissioner for Local Government Affairs, Mrs. Azuka Enemuo, said that the state was able to offset the huge bill of the pensioners due to fiscal discipline and prudent management of available resources and has commenced with a new phase of derivative pension scheme instead of contributory pension scheme.

Commending the Governor’s gesture to the deserving retired workers, the Chairman of Awka South Local Government Area, Azubuike Iloh, said that the Governor had done well in wiping the tears from the faces of the senior citizens.

The Governor also received thumbs up from the pensioners themselves for giving governance a human face within few months of assumption of office.

Obi Donates Funds And Equipment To Mission Hospital

Governor Peter Obi has presented an additional cheque for 50 million naira to the Holy Rosary Specialist Hospital and Maternity, Waterside Onitsha, for the completion of the ongoing Pharmacy and Diagnostic Building project.

This was part of the ongoing effort of the Anambra State Government to achieve the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) in the area of Health.

During a visit to the hospital, in which he inspected the ongoing building projects and expressed satisfaction over the quality of work done, he also donated a fully equipped life support ambulance procured at the cost of 30 million Naira.

Responding, the Hospital Manager, Rev. Fr. Stanley Ozigbo, said that the Governor’s Integrated Development Strategy has yielded the much desired fruit, as their hospital was a shining example.

The Governor, also in the spirit of ensuring the safety of lives and property of the people of the state handed over to the Catholic Bishop of Onitsha Archdiocese, Most Rev. Valerian Okeke, three security vehicles, following the recent developments in crime wave in the state.

The Governor performed the handover ceremony at the premises of the Basilica of the Most Holy Trinity, Onitsha, with the Bishop commending the Governor’s effort.

Tricycle Riders Protest

Unknown to the Governor, while the security vehicles were being presented inside the Basilica, over 100 placard carrying commercial tricycle riders known as Keke Napep, gathered outside to protest illegal and multiple taxation of agents said to be working for the government.

A mild drama played out as the Governor was about leaving. Mr Victor Onyekachukwu lamented to the Governor, the excessive extortion by individuals, unions and groups on daily basis and pleaded with him to intervene.

The Governor not only condemned the development but also assured them of prompt investigation of the matter which will begin on Monday.

The Governor’s speech brought relief as the already tensed up situation was calmed.

Governor Obi Commissions Agu Awka Power Plant

Anambra State Governor, Mr. Peter Obi, has commissioned the Agu Awka Power Sub-station in Awka.

This is a joint project of the Federal, State and Local Government under the direct supervision of the Niger-Delta Power Holding Company Limited.

While commissioning the project which is expected to ensure steady supply to Awka and environs, Governor Obi emphasized that the project will help the entrepreneurial spirit of the Anambra people to be motivated, and consequently help industrial activities to thrive in the state.

He also expressed gratitude to President Goodluck Jonathan for his commitment to bringing about transformation in the power sector.

Also briefing the audience at the event, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the company, Mr. James Olowu not only assured of the usage of the best equipment in the project, he also commended the Anambra State Government for having invested a lot in the project.

The Managing Director then took the Governor round the facility, through the control room that has 33KVA Panels which is the power house of the substation.

In a similar development, Governor Peter Obi has also handed over to 58 directors in the Anambra State Civil Service, cars for their daily operation and running of their different departments.

The directors described the gesture as unprecedented and that it has rekindled in them the hope that they are part and parcel of the present administration.

The keys to the vehicles were handed over to the Anambra State Head of Civil Service, Mr. Chidi Ezeoke.

Anambra Polls: Police IG Orders Restriction Of Movement

The Nigeria Police High Command has ordered a restriction of movement within the boundaries of Anambra State with effect from 6.00pm on Friday, 15 November, to 6.00am on Sunday, 17 November, 2013.

Consequently, all states contiguous to Anambra State – the states of Delta, Enugu, Imo, Abia will be heavily policed. However, those on essential duties are not affected by this order.

The force has sternly warned all security details to desist from accompanying their principals and politicians to polling booths and collation centres during the election. It reiterates that only police personnel specifically assigned for election duties must be seen within and around the election designated places.

The Police High Command noted that the restriction order is informed by the demands of overriding security considerations. Noting that the force is not ignorant of the citizens’ right to freedom of movement, as enshrined in the constitution, it however insists that this is a pre-emptive measure aimed at forestalling elaborate plans by faceless groups to undermine the electoral process as gathered through intelligence reports.

The apex police authority therefore, while empathizing with the citizenry over the inconveniences the order may cause, implored them to see this order as very necessary in the present circumstance and geared towards the quest for a seamless, credible and successful governorship election.

The force also suggested that travellers should take advantage of alternate routes to their destinations where necessary within the days, Friday 15 – Sunday 17 November, 2013, that this order is in force.

Anambra University Renamed After Ojukwu

Anambra State University in Uli has been renamed after the Late Dim Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu in celebration of his 80th posthumous birthday. 

The Anambra State Governor, Peter Obi, announced the renaming in a live broadcast on the television station of the Anambra Broadcasting Service.

He reiterated the commitment of his administration to restoring standards which demand a simultaneous transformation of all sectors and the recognition of role models.

He urged the people of Anambra State to continue to seek ways of making the state a great one.

Late Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu was a Nigerian military officer and politician. He served as the Military Governor of the Eastern Region of Nigeria in 1966.

He was the leader of the unsuccessful breakaway Republic of Biafra from 1967 to 1970 and a Nigerian politician from 1983 until he died on November 26, 2011, aged 78.

Obi Donates Materials Worth N10 Million To Disabled Persons

The Anambra state governor, Mr. Peter Obi, has distributed empowerment materials valued at about N10 million to over 500 physically challenged persons at a ceremony marking the 2013 International Day for Persons with Disabilities at the Women Development Center in Awka.

At the event with the theme, “Breaking Barriers and Opening Doors to Realise an Inclusive Society for All,” items donated to the individuals included wheel chairs, grinding machines, hair dryers, sewing machines, braille machines and papers, hair clippers and others.

The Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Development, led by Henrietta Agbata, thanked the governor and noted that his administration had shown commitment to the cause of persons with disabilities and had empowered them several times.

However, the Chairman of the Association of Persons with Disabilities, Mr. Lawrence Nwanolue, faulted the ministry for not carrying them along in policies, decisions and activities involving them. He however thanked the governor for the donation.

Governor Obi, who noted the complaints, promised to make up for lapses by the ministry in ensuring their welfare and happiness.

He also assured the people that he would ensure the availability of a micro credit scheme as well as the provision of a bus to the disabled before the end of November.

He added that their welfare would remain a top priority of his administration.

Governor Obi Flags Off Routine Immunization

Anambra state Governor, Mr. Peter Obi, says his administration targets one hundred per cent immunization coverage of the state before the end of his tenure in March 17 2014.

He was speaking during the October flag off of routine immunization plus days for children under five years at Ebenebe, Awka north local government area of Anambra state, where about 100 children were immunized, a sure way of improving their lot as part of health intervention by the state government, in an agrarian community with a projected population of 136,622 people for 2013 records and is said to be one of the poorest communities in Anambra state.

Dider Gbofeyin, the state representative of UNICEF revealed that Anambra state has recorded over 95 per cent immunization coverage in polio but decried the poor tetanus immunization by pregnant women in the area.

The routine immunization programme aims at protecting over 27,300 children less than five years of age from the polio disease in the local government area and the number represents over twenty five per cent of the population in Awka north local council area.

In his remarks, Dr. Lawrence Ikeakor, who is the State Commissioner for Health, says the state is ready to maintain its six-year polio free status while announcing the upgrade of twelve general hospitals in the state.

Governor Obi’s resolve to leave lingering memories in the minds of Anambra indigenes is what he has extended to the health sector when he stated that in spite of the present wide and comprehensive coverage so far achieved, his government was still determined to scale up further its polio vaccination drive in the state.

Obiano Wins APGA Anambra Primaries

Ahead of the November 16th Anambra governorship election, the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) concluded its primary election to select a suitable candidate that will be its flag bearer.

After ten hours at the Women Development Center in Awka, Mr. Willie Obiano, from Anambra North Senatorial Zone emerged the governorship candidate with 870 votes.

He was closely followed by Honourable Uche Ekwunife who polled 150 votes.

Before the voting commenced, one of the aspirants, Mr. Patrick Obianwu, announced his withdrawal again from the contest and urged his supporters to go for his counterpart, Mr. Willie Obiano.

Chairman of the electoral panel, Mr. Martin Agbaso, commended the resilience of the aspirants saying each one of them is capable of winning the general election but was only necessary that the best be chosen.

The aspirants included Honourable Uche Ekwunife, Paul Odenigbo, Honorable Emeka Nwogbo, John Nwosu and Willie Obiano. Prince John Emeka had earlier withdrawn in protest. Voting commenced.

While many commended the transparency and credibility of the party, there were others who condemned the whole process citing irregularity in the delegate list and faulty accreditation process.

The state governor, Mr. Peter Obi who had always wished to hand over power to a successor from the north in the spirit of equity and fairness, urged the candidate and the party to work as a team and deliver Anambra for APGA come November 16.

Obi To Develop Rural Maternities With Churches

The Governor of Anambra state, Peter Obi has revealed plans to commence the construction of maternity centers in rural communities of the state in partnership with churches.

While laying the foundation stone of an ultra-modern Pharmacy and Diagnostic Center at the Holy Rosary Specialist Hospital and Maternity, Waterside, Onitsha, the governor stated that partnering with the church is yielding positive results.

He added that being among the six states that won the Bill Gates award on Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) related projects, the state government intends to invest in rural maternity centers.

The governor expressed satisfaction with the successful partnership between the state and the church while inspecting the construction of the hostel block project which began last year.

He also presented a cheque of N10 million to the church.

He noted government will expand its collaboration with the church to initiate more projects and that the maternity centers will scale up interventions towards achieving the MDGs.

The state government said repositioning the hospital and setting up the new maternity centers will go a long way in serving the people better and help actualize the MDGs before the 2015 deadline.

The Catholic Archbishop of Onitsha commended the governor for his sustained efforts towards uplifting the lives of the people.



Ekweremadu Calls For Decentralisation Of Police

Senator Ike Ekweremmadu, representing Enugu West Senatorial District, has said that the way forward for the Nigeria Police, in line with the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, is decentralization.

While delivering a paper on “Policing and National Security in Nigeria” at the 2013 Annual Lecture of the Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, the senator declared his stand in support for the decentralization of the police.

Sen. Ekweremmadu further called on the National Assembly to provide the framework for the establishment, structure and powers of the state police.

Professor Onyeka Nwolisa of the University of Ibadan, in his speech disclosed that his major concern is the conception of national security which pertains to democracy.

Governor Peter Obi of Anambra state in turn decried the absence of true spirit of federalism.

Speaking at the event, the US consulate advised that utmost carefulness be employed in whatever decision the country reaches as it will affect the whole black race.

Obi flags off reconstruction of three bridges worth over N2 billion

In a quiet ceremony at the site of the bridge at Ozubulu, Ekwusigo local government area of the state, Anambra state governor, Peter Obi, has flagged off the reconstruction of three bridges along Atani/Ozubulu road which is under construction.

The bridges awarded at the cost of over N2 billion  bring to 20 the number of bridges executed by the present administration with some of them already completed.

Mr Obi, said 15 per cent of the contract sum has been paid the contractor to ensure speedy execution of project at record time.

The first bridge at Atani axis is 60 metres in length, while the remaining two at Ozubulu are 45 metres respectively. They have also been expanded from four feet to 12 feet, width wise, and its height increased to eight feet.

The economic importance of the road was captured by the governor and secretary to the state government.

Also the commissioner of works reminded the people on the need to be supportive of government’s effort.

Member representing Ekwusigo Local Government Area in the state House of Assembly, Mr Paulinus Onyeke, commended the present administration for its dedication to duty and service to mankind and urged his constituents to lend support by way of taking ownership of the construction.